Recently, the Associated Press (AP) published an article the Reno paper ran with the headline, “Judge orders women to leave house.”
Last year, real estate investment group Wedgewood, Inc., bought an Oakland three-bedroom house in foreclosure for $501,000. In November, before Wedgewood could take legal possession, three homeless women and their children, calling themselves Moms 4 Housing, illegally moved in.
The squatters refuse to leave, so Wedgewood asked a California court to direct the local sheriff to evict them. The judge did so, giving them five days to leave.
An attorney helping them said, “We understand that the court’s hands are tied because in this country property fights are valued over human rights.”
One of the women, Dominque Walker, 34 and the mother of 1- and 5-year-old daughters, added, “Housing is a human right. I pay bills there. I pay water, PG&E, internet. We live there.”
So, if they claim housing is a human right, they have a right to seize someone’s property. And their lawyer posits a false distinction between sacred human rights and grubby property rights, and then falsely claims the courts value property rights over human rights.
Walker also said, “We want to purchase the home … it needs to belong back in the hands of the community.” And, “It was stolen through the foreclosure crisis.”
AP adds, the women say they moved into the house partly to protest the methods of speculators who snap up distressed homes and leave them empty despite the housing crisis. While Walker says “we” are the community and want to purchase the house, AP clarifies that they want Wedgewood to sell the property to a nonprofit land trust (that presumably would let them continue to live there).
But they moved in before Wedgewood could even take possession of the house. So, obviously Wedgewood isn’t the party that left the house empty. Lest one think perhaps the women merely chose the wrong house for their protest, Walker adds the ignorant and malicious lie that Wedgewood stole it.
Moving beyond technicalities, the real points here are the false distinction between human and property rights and the claim that property rights are wrongly favored. Plus the implication that wrapping oneself in the flag of human rights permits one to do anything and wrong anybody, especially corporations, to secure those human rights.
In this case, all one needs to do to justify seizures or other aggressive actions is claim to be a victim, even of mere misfortune, and allege the other party is culpable, even for doing reasonable and socially beneficial things like buying a house in foreclosure.
Asserting a “human right” to housing confers on someone an obligation to provide housing at that someone’s expense. That’s so obviously wrong and predatory that the kleptos and their ideologue supporters always demonize the real victims to make the theft or other aggressive action seem justified. Ergo, the lie that Wedgewood stole the house.
Perhaps the women come from a culture that taught them nothing of how the world really works: via invention, innovation, work, savings and investment, productivity, disruption and competition to get income by delivering value to employers, consumers and the public interest. And taught them nothing of the essential role of property rights in providing all human wellbeing.
Maybe in their experience things work via the kleptocracy of politics: asserted rights, demands, demonstrations, coercion, legislation, regulation, litigation, etc.
Thus, they wouldn’t know that the real causes of unaffordable housing and so many other California problems are the entitlements, land-use and related regulations, high taxes and transfer payments, green dogma, etc. fostered by the politics of them and their advocates.
But what’s the excuse for AP writers and editors and mainstream media generally?
They should recognize the slimy ethical and vacuous intellectual basis of these claims do not merit coverage. They should be researching and producing stories that educate more people on how the world really works and the problems caused by progressive policies.
“They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy.” -Jonah 2:8
It was reported by Fox News' Tucker Carlson that 18 Republican governors have explicitly requested that more refugees be sent to their states. They said that it was “compassion” and “Christian charity” to do so. The questions were asked, "have their constituents demanded this?" The reply was "No." So, what's going on here?
Guest Ned Ryan responded: Refugee resettlement has nothing to do with Christianity and has everything to do with the immoral behavior of these governors and quite frankly a perverse incentive for these government funded charities that are acting as refugee contractors grifting (swindling) off the American taxpayers.
However, the US State Department is paying these refugee contractors over $2,100 per refugee, of which they get to keep 45%, and then they're doing this campaign on these governors saying you have to put your Christian charity into action through an act of cowardice.
Take note: This is the same government that has sanctioned the murder of innocent babies in the womb (Deuteronomy 19:10; Proverbs 6:17).This has nothing to do with the safety of Americans, it has everything to do with selling the American people out to foreigners in giving them our land. There are over 10 million illegals in America today.
What is even more disturbing is that the number of Mosques in the United States has jumped up to 74% since September 11, 2001.
The US survey 2011 counted a total of 2,106 as compared to 1,209 in the year 2000.
Americans, you are being sold out by your said representatives because you have sold out your God (Jeremiah 16:10-14).
Friends, this is not a foreign people doing this to you and your posterity. This is corrupt representatives of the United States government committing treason against you (Luke 22:48).
Treason is the only crime specifically defined in the Constitution.
According to Article III, Section 3, a person is guilty of treason if he or she goes to war against the United States or gives “aid or comfort” to an enemy (Deuteronomy 28:43).
Americans have known and have yet refused to take responsibility for the actions of their said representatives because Americans have failed to repent before the Lord. It takes more than "voting them out" (Read Article 2, Section 4, US Constitution). They work for you and they will act accordingly, if you are good, the government will be good. If you fail to lawfully react, they will continue to act lawlessly (1 Timothy 6:12), and so they are.
Former slave and abolitionist Fredrick Douglas, who knew best when he said:
“Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have found out the exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them, and these will continue till they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both.”
To What Does This Come Down?
Your sins are finding you out (Numbers 23:32).
“But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee:
The Lord shall bring thee, and thy king which thou shalt set over thee, unto a nation which neither thou nor thy fathers have known; and there shalt thou serve other gods, wood and stone.
The stranger that is within thee shall get up above thee very high; and thou shalt come down very low. He shall lend to thee, and thou shalt not lend to him: he shall be the head, and thou shalt be the tail. Moreover all these curses shall come upon thee, and shall pursue thee, and overtake thee, till thou be destroyed; because thou hearken not unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to keep his commandments and his statutes which he commanded thee:
The Lord shall bring a nation against thee from far, from the end of the earth, as swift as the eagle flieth; a nation whose tongue thou shalt not understand;
A nation of fierce countenance, which shall not regard the person of the old, nor shew favour to the young: And he shall eat the fruit of thy cattle, and the fruit of thy land, until thou be destroyed: which also shall not leave thee either corn, wine, or oil, or the increase of thy kine, or flocks of thy sheep, until he have destroyed thee. And he shall besiege thee in all thy gates, until thy high and fenced walls come down, wherein thou trustedst, throughout all thy land: and he shall besiege thee in all thy gates throughout all thy land, which the Lord thy God hath given thee.
If thou wilt not observe to do all the words of this law that are written in this book, that thou mayest fear this glorious and fearful name, The Lord Thy God; Then the Lord will make thy plagues wonderful, and the plagues of thy seed, even great plagues, and of long continuance, and sore sicknesses, and of long continuance. Moreover he will bring upon thee all the diseases of Egypt, which thou wast afraid of; and they shall cleave unto thee. Also every sickness, and every plague, which is not written in the book of this law, them will the Lord bring upon thee, until thou be destroyed. And ye shall be left few in number, whereas ye were as the stars of heaven for multitude; because thou wouldest not obey the voice of the Lord thy God. And it shall come to pass, that as the Lord rejoiced over you to do you good, and to multiply you; so the Lord will rejoice over you to destroy you, and to bring you to nought; and ye shall be plucked from off the land whither thou goest to possess it. And the Lord shall scatter thee among all people, from the one end of the earth even unto the other; and there thou shalt serve other gods, which neither thou nor thy fathers have known, even wood and stone. And among these nations shalt thou find no ease, neither shall the sole of thy foot have rest: but the Lord shall give thee there a trembling heart, and failing of eyes, and sorrow of mind: And thy life shall hang in doubt before thee; and thou shalt fear day and night, and shalt have none assurance of thy life: In the morning thou shalt say, Would God it were even! and at even thou shalt say, Would God it were morning! for the fear of thine heart wherewith thou shalt fear, and for the sight of thine eyes which thou shalt see. And the Lord shall bring thee into Egypt again with ships, by the way whereof I spake unto thee, Thou shalt see it no more again: and there ye shall be sold unto your enemies for bondmen and bondwomen, and no man shall buy you." -Deuteronomy 28:15, 36, 43-45, 49-52, 58-68
If repentance toward God is not immediately addressed, and remain in your sins (Exodus 20; Acts 20:21; Galatians 3:24),then it should come as no surprise when you find your government continuously selling you out only to be devoured by them that mean to conquer. This is Bible and it is history America.
For example: Americans have been convinced by the same government that it is somehow a right to kill, which the Lord condemns, an innocent, unborn child in the womb by a woman/man with knives, only to have the flood gates opened to those who mean to kill you with knives (Matthew 5:45). Then you discover the ones opening up those gates to those who mean to kill you are also attempting to strip you of your rights to defend yourselves against such people.
This is why it is of the utmost importance to deal with corruption: First, before God (Acts 20:21) in repentance of our sins, transgressing God’s law (1 John 3:4), and then bearing the fruits of repentance wrought in you by the Holy Ghost (2 Corinthians 7:10, Galatians 3:24), which drives us to Christ where the Law can do no more (Hebrews 12:2). Then you will take vengeance upon corruption “and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled” (2 Corinthians 10:6)
But not until then.
I try to be well informed on many public policy matters, but I pretend no great expertise on international relations and conflict. That said, some thoughts on those subjects in light of the current conflict in the Middle East.
As my daughter is learning in her government class, a fundamental duty of national governments is to protect their people from external threats. After World War I, some Republicans became isolationist, claiming we had little or no stake in many international affairs, and the Great War showed the costs and risks of getting involved.
They were certainly right about the costs and risks. If all recorded history had not been sufficient to teach us the horrors of war, the Great War certainly should have done so. The loss of human lives and damage to many survivors and their families, the destruction of cities and towns, of economies, infrastructure and cultures is on its face insane unless it is the only way to avoid even worse developments.
We did not get the worst of that war, although we got plenty. But Europeans who fought it from start to finish and on their own grounds should have learned because they did. Nonetheless, they had little choice but to fight World War II because the aggressive evil of racist German National Socialism and Italian fascism attacked them viciously, leaving no alternative.
The isolationists thought we could stay out of that war because we had oceans between us and it. Some folks believed then and now that if we’re peaceful, non-interventionist and amicable with other countries, they’ll respond in kind. These views were definitively shattered by the murderous, racist, aggressive Japanese militarism in Asia and then Pearl Harbor.
Two things were clear after WWII. First, there are significant numbers of evil people and ideas in the world and they sometimes control the means to wreak great destruction. So, we must be ready to fight and defeat them.
Second, mountains and oceans are no longer significant barriers behind which to hide. Moreover, there is a compelling positive reason to actively engage with other nations: the huge economic and cultural benefits we get from trade and international relations.
So, we need to maintain a substantial, ready national defense.
The expansionist, totalitarian and murderous evils of Soviet, Korean, Cuban and Chinese communism proved such malign forces were not wiped out in two world wars. It seems there’s always another one waiting around the corner.
However, with the end of the world wars and the rise of communism following hard on, engaging in war and preparation for it became normal. Indeed, as President Eisenhower warned, a military-industrial complex had grown from these circumstances and now had an interest in arms production and fomenting conflict. The MIC is still as powerful, influential and pernicious as ever.
One important lesson of the fall of the Soviet empire is that evil doctrines, if contained, will fail from their own evil. Thus, the implosion of the Soviet Union because it could not compete with democratic market liberalism. (For a while, China took a capitalist road, but returned to ruthless authoritarianism.)
Some academics proclaimed this triumph brought the end of history. They forgot there are always new evil doctrines.
In the last half century, Islamofascism has metastasized because it originated in the Mideast, where the unearned endowment of oil and gas riches, shared by the Saudis with Islamofascists as a defensive measure, allowed it. Islamofascism is evil because it is in its essence hostile to individual liberty and markets. And because it views terrorism as a legitimate element of war.
President Bush 43 erred in embracing nation building as a counter-measure. President Trump got things right in promising to stop the endless wars where we have no real interests at stake. That means most of the Middle East, not including Israel. His surgical strike to kill Major General Soleimani was an ideal response to Iran, especially after foregoing drone strikes.
Now he must find a way to end most of our involvement there and bring most troops home while proportionately parrying Iran’s counterstrikes.
I am not what you would call an observant Jew.
But, being a baby boomer, I received the full Sunday School treatment from my parents and got, in those 10 years, what would probably be today an advanced degree in Judaism and the history of the Jews.
And I got from my late Father, a World War II Navy veteran, a firm connection to one of the darkest periods of our modern world’s history.
Additionally, I met a distant cousin who the Allies liberated from Auschwitz and, subsequently, moved to the United States.
The impact on a young boy of seeing a serial number tattooed on a forearm cannot be underestimated.
For those of you Jews who have no real connection to World War Two and the Holocaust, you are making a huge mistake by merely assuming it could never happen again and certainly not in the United States.
The Holocaust was NOT played out on a Hollywood sound stage. If you think it was, you are even dumber than the Germans who allowed it to happen. It happened.
The First Amendment is a beautiful thing. But what keeps us safe from the excesses of the First Amendment is the Second. And who wants to take away our guns? Germany didn’t have a Second Amendment and the first thing Hitler did when he came to power is to remove private gun ownership but thankfully, here in America, we are pretty well armed.
West of the Hudson River, East of the Los Angeles County line and South of the Cook County line is a whole nation which is totally unwilling to give up our second Amendment rights.
And, I’m guessing that most of Israel’s support comes from that same large area.
Israel was established with the concept that Jews should have a homeland where another Holocaust could NEVER happen. They became fierce warriors to insure that.
For some reason, the farther people get from an event like the Holocaust the less they are concerned with the consequences.
As for Iranian retaliation, that’s what happens when a Little League team takes on the Yankees. The truth is that one button levels Tehran. Another can level the Quds force.
And that’s before Israel gets involved.
Iran has plenty of American blood on its hands. It seems only fair to make it pay.
We don’t know a lot. Yet. What we do know is that a US drone strike hit Baghdad airport killing Qasem Soleimani (and one of his deputies), a top general and very powerful man in Iran. Additionally, the U.S. will be sending thousands more troops to the Middle East in case of retaliation. The State Department claims that the drone strike happened to prevent an “imminent attack” in the region that would put American lives at risk.
CNN is quoting Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R, Kentucky) as saying:
"Soleimani made it his life's work to take the Iranian revolutionary call for death to America and death to Israel and turned them into action. But this terrorist mastermind was not just a threat to the United States and Israel. For more than a decade, he masterminded Iran's malevolent and destabilizing work throughout the entire Middle East,"
And the Democrats seem to agree with Schumer saying that no one will shed a tear over Soleimani’s death. Although top Democrats, especially those on the Intel Commities were not briefed beforehand about the strike which is potentially problematic.
Okay. So those seem to be the general facts as everyone is reporting. Since both sides agree this guy was a terrorist mastermind I will take it on faith that his death will save innocent lives. But … now what? Well, the cynical side of me agrees with many folks who have pointed out that President Trump predicted this very event - for Obama. In 2011 and 2012 Trump tweeted that Obama would start a war with Iran in order to win an election. Here they are:
In order to get elected, @BarackObama will start a war with Iran.
Now that Obama’s poll numbers are in tailspin – watch for him to launch a strike in Libya or Iran. He is desperate.
Don't let Obama play the Iran card in order to start a war in order to get elected--be careful Republicans!
Trump on Nov. 16, 2011:
“Our president will start a war with Iran because he has absolutely no ability to negotiate. He's weak and ineffective. So the only way he figures that he's going to get reelected — and as sure as you're sitting there — is to start a war with Iran.”
So, is this just a Wag the Dog tactic? Is Trump doing what he “predicted” Obama would do? Even though … Obama never did that thing, but whatever. Let’s just ignore that for now.
War Presidents are popular. It’s true; however, I suspect the truth is … all of the above. This Soleimani guy was clearly a terrorist scumbag and I don’t care that he’s dead. The drone strike also helps Donald Trump in the popularity polls because war sells. So, I think we have a little of column A and a little of column B.
To be honest, I don’t think this will lead to a full scale war. The U.S. launches drone strikes a lot. Probably more than you realize. Remember that Obama was and still is criticized for the large amount of drone strikes he sent out. Well, it was widely reported that in 2009-2010, President Obama launched 186 drone strikes on Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen. In 2017 and 2018, President Trump launched 238 drone strikes in those regions. Again, Obama was openly criticized for launching too many drone strikes. And Trump has launched much more. So, this is nothing new, especially to the people living in said regions.
I’m not going to weigh in too heavily with the “but drone strikes create terrorists” argument, even though it's true. But I will say that if Iran was going to start a war with the U.S. because of drone strikes - they probably would have already done it. On the other hand, this was a very popular person in Iran who is publicaly claiming that they will retaliate the U.S.
Let's hope cooler heads prevail. An all out war with Iran would be ... ugly.
Oh, how many times I have preached that the Lord is going to get our attention one way or another and, boy oh boy, is He doing just that. His message is clear: If you want to remain free then you are going to have to fight for your freedoms (1 Timothy 6:12). After all, the history of the Church is that the Lord is willing to give the Church what it is willing to fight for, no doubt.
Tyrants know what happens when we do not keep the Lord's commandments in keeping with His justice (Isaiah 51:4), and that is that tyranny rises as freedoms die. In fact, tyrants are encouraged by the apathetic (Matthew 13:25). They are encouraged by the tolerant in committing transgressions (1 John 3:4). That is exactly what we have seen in this country for far too long.
How many profess to be the Lord's in this country who refuse to obey Him in keeping His commandments (1 John 2:4)? It is astounding! The biblical illiterates have trained the goats well.
History teaches us that you can only oppress a people for so long before their oppressors get a response. Our forefathers, are a prime example of just that, There will always be a small number of those who will obey the Lord and resist the tyrants (Romans 12:21).
Thomas Jefferson wrote in a letter to William S. Smith, a diplomatic official in London, on November 13, 1787, “God forbid we should ever be 20 years without such a rebellion.” Jefferson remarked The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure.”
He was not only talking of a foreign enemy that would commit such infidelity, treachery and treason without, but about those who would commit such infidelity treachery and treason within (Luke 22:48).
When looking at the example that our forefathers left us, that is when it came to their examples, we need to look no further than the Declaration of Independence. We can find that 75% of that documentation is our forefathers throwing off the tyrant across the pond who would not be ruled by God to keep men free (2 Corinthians 3:17). The sort of tyrants that Americans are now finding in their own midst.
Law Enforcement Today reported, “Thousands of cops, veterans, supporters pledge to join militia in Virginia to combat unconstitutional laws.”
From the article:
“Things are getting really bad in Virginia. But this group isn’t going down without a fight. Virginia – Monday morning, Law Enforcement Today reported on how Tazewell County, Virginia is crafting a militia to defend the Constitution in the state. And within hours, we were flooded with thousands of emails from people across the state – police officers, veterans, and patriotic Americans – who said they are joining.
And it’s a movement that’s gaining traction across the state. Wrote one man:
“I am Vietnam vet, ex-police, retired and am behind your ideas 100% , anything I can do I would like to help.
I live in Franklin County, which voted down being a sanctuary city being the council is Democratic, a moonshine county giving up their guns is dumb.
The South gave up their flag, their statues and now they want their guns, sounds like Hitler’s Germany.”
“There had already been rumblings locally about a militia being formed last month. We started carefully and quietly assembling patriotic Americans who are prepared to defend freedom at all costs.
In the past day those numbers have swelled. We have a very strong military presence here – more veterans and both active and retired LE than you can count. As of this evening, we’re talking about thousands of people that have expressed an interest in being a part of this movement.”
Last week, we reported on how lawmakers over in Virginia were threatening to use the National Guard if members of local law enforcement refuses to enforce laws passed in the state that they felt violated the Second amendment."
Think about what this tyrant Ralph Northam and his subordinates are suggesting. They are threatening to use the National Guard against law-abiding gun owners. Who is the National Guard? Our grandfathers, our fathers, our uncles, our cousins, our brothers, our neighbors, and friends. Friends, this precipitates a civil war (Psalm 9:17).
This is the importance of knowing the US Constitution and upholding its enumerated Laws (Article 6, Section 2).
This is a clear and present danger as it is a true revelation and exhibition of what tyranny looks and acts like (Matthew 7:16). And it is happening in America today.
Notice they also want to, by force, push the police into acting in an unconstitutional manner as they are acting. This is tyranny. It is our duty to lawfully throw it off (Romans 12:21).
“To disarm the people…[i]s the most effectual way to enslave them.” – George Mason, referencing advice given to the British Parliament by Pennsylvania governor Sir William Keith, The Debates in the Several State Conventions on the Adoption of the Federal Constitution, June 14, 1788
That’s what sparked things in Tazewell County, which has said it isn’t going down without a fight.
On top of calling themselves a Second Amendment Sanctuary County, they’re also crafting a militia, as well. The Virginia county has taken the movement that has swept across the state and added an element that is sure to trigger pro-gun-grabbing politicians in the state.
Who is the militia?
“I ask who are the militia? They consist now of the whole people, except a few public officers.” – George Mason, Address to the Virginia Ratifying Convention, June 4, 1788
“The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. A well regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the best and most natural defense of a free country.” – James Madison, I Annals of Congress 434, June 8, 1789
“A militia when properly formed are in fact the people themselves…and include, according to the past and general usage of the states, all men capable of bearing arms… “To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them.”
– Richard Henry Lee, Federal Farmer No. 18, January 25, 1788
“What, Sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty …. Whenever Governments mean to invade the rights and liberties of the people, they always attempt to destroy the militia, in order to raise an army upon their ruins.”
– Rep. Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts, I Annals of Congress 750, August 17, 1789
“Our position is that Article I, Section 13, of the Constitution of Virginia reserves the right to ‘order’ militia to the localities. Therefore, counties, not the state, determine what types of arms may be carried in their territory and by whom. So, we are ‘ordering’ the militia by making sure everyone can own a weapon.”
Thus, if anyone from the state tries to remove the sheriff from their elected office because they refuse to enforce unjust laws, those state officials will be faced with a lawful militia composed of citizens within the state.
The county is taking their militia element very seriously as the new ordinance calls for concealed weapons training for any resident of the county that can lawfully own a gun.
Another couple sent in this message late Monday to LET:
“…my husband and I are die hard 2nd Amendment defenders, and if they want our guns they will have to kill us to get them, but I guarantee that they will not come out of that battle unscathed!!!
We are both disabled but we would be ready and more than willing to fight side by side with all of our like minded brothers and sisters.
We are from West “by God” Virginia and we tell everyone who cares to ask what we think about guns and the 2nd Amendment, that we were born with a gun in our hand and will probably die the same way! Guns don’t kill people, at least not without a trigger person, it is usually by a deranged person or a gang member or a person in the act of robbery or drug running, kidnapping etc.
And usually committed with an illegally purchased or non registered weapon, the leftist, dictator, communistic socialist ‘ idiots need to realize that if they take away legal gun owners weapons , who have been trained to properly handle a weapon, they might as well open the doors and announce to the criminals to come get what they want because the criminals will be the ONLY ones to have a gun which was obtained from the black market.”
The county has also called for schools to adopt firearms safety training programs. Considering the blue wave that hit the state, along with Bloomberg pouring in millions toward the election, this is a massive win that shows gun owners aren’t going to lie down.
Americans, be encouraged and let their cruelties swell our ranks because they are.
Knowing what is unfolding in Virginia and how it is that they are responding to tyrants makes one proud to be an American (Psalm 33:12).
When I was seven, I got a cowboy hat and dual-holster gun belt, plus twin cap pistols for Christmas. That’s what little boys were into in the mid-1950s. My uncle challenged me to quick draw contests and won every one. There may be a life lesson there, but I’m not sure what it is.
Three years later, my brother and I got matching red bicycles with 26-inch wheels. That opened up many new experiences to us – whole new worlds, in fact. Bikes are a blessing to children and adults.
Two years on, in seventh grade I welcomed the modern era, high tech and access to music with a top-end transistor radio the size of a pack of regular cigarettes. In 1961, the cigarette reference was cool to boy of twelve. So, it didn’t matter that I got nothing else that Christmas because that item was all we could afford.
As these anecdotes illustrate, to children Christmas is much about receiving gifts. That’s not a bad thing, for it brings them joy and the gifts sometimes open up great new experiences for them. As well as showing them the love their parents and others feel for them.
In the next few years, I remember the three TV stations – yes, there were only three then, even in markets like St. Louis – broadcasting keep Christ in Christmas ads and even a program on the subject. Imagine that! Today, thanks to snowflakes and progressives, those stations may wish you happy holidays, but dare not utter the word “Christmas” in any approving way.
In the mid-70s, I recall driving my MGB on Christmas Eves from Urbana to Belleville, each time assessing the year passed and what progress I was making professionally and personally. Some of those years, I took my sister’s horse out for a bracing Christmas morning ride in an inch or two of snow along country roads and across fields.
Also, I sent Christmas poinsettias to my girlfriend in Atlanta. She said Christmas didn’t really begin until they arrived. When I flew to visit her, the tradition of traveling at Christmas took root.
In the 1976 movie Nashville, the presidential candidate asked college students offbeat questions like: “Does the smell of oranges remind you of Christmas morning?” It does for me, because our mother always prepared each of us a stocking with nuts, chocolates, other treats and a large apple and orange. And she fixed eggnog. Today, my sainted wife Kathy continues this tradition in our family.
In the 1980s, when I became a yuppie in San Francisco’s Marina District, Christmas was often about ski trips. The slopes were delightfully uncrowded on Christmas day and we were blessed often with blue skies, bright sun and great snow.
In the 1990s, I secured a center box each year for the San Francisco Ballet’s annual performance of The Nutcracker. I prepared a feast for eight at my apartment and then we left for the ballet. Until I left the Bay Area in 2001, that event was the official beginning of Christmas.
By then, Christmas was about a season, experiences with friends and family, and giving – not receiving. People become difficult to buy for as they get older. Moreover, the satisfaction of giving and seeing the happiness in the faces of others beats receiving.
After Kathy and I married and moved to Carson City, for a while we had a tradition of Christmas Eve here and Christmas morning flights – Kathy, our Awesome daughter Karyn, Kathy’s mom (the best mom-in-law ever) and I – to Belleville for time with my family. Both sides of my family always made me the luckiest boy in town.
Because we could no longer attend the SF Ballet, our new start of Christmas became the annual dinner at our home and showing of It’s A Wonderful Life. That film is quite spiritual, of course. It’s about salvation and also reminds us that one of the beauties of Christianity is that it’s a religion of forgiveness, not harsh justice. And about choice, not domination.
Before I get into how I think We the People of America should view the perverted version of the Ed Sullivan (or the Jerry Springer, your choice) show in the House of Representatives, I want to give you an update from my subject of last week, the Kabbage company.
After my column appeared, I got a phone call from an executive there and they very graciously acknowledged my point, that as a lender to small business, America’s largest employer, when they make an adverse decision, human beings should be involved. Ultimately, they were operating on bad artificial intelligence and they fixed it.
That is the hallmark of how good business people operate. Consider that as you see what the Democrat majority in the House is trying to do to our first businessman President.
And, on that note, let’s talk about Jerry Nadler’s inquisition against the President.
Now, keep in mind, that Nadler’s House Judiciary Committee should have been the committee to pursue the “impeachment” investigation as opposed to Adam Schiff’s House “Intelligence” Committee.
Basically, the Democrats have been thwarted at every turn in their jihad against the President—whose only impeachable offense was to actually win the 2016 election and threaten the status quo of the permanent establishment—and this is just a continuation of their effort to get rid of a threat which has put the establishment of both parties on Defcon Two.
They think that this…businessman…may be the President but he’s certainly not really the …President…and he can’t really make his own foreign policy.
Folks, what it gets down to is that people like Schiff, Nadler and the diplocrats I mentioned above think we’re stupid. Just like Hillary Clinton did.
They think—and sometimes actually come out and say—that we simply cannot be entrusted with the election of a President. That’s why they want to get rid of the Electoral College—so our votes would mean nothing.
Fortunately, the Republicans control the Senate. And when this show gets to the Senate, it will be like a little league baseball team taking on the Yankees.
Since Watergate, we have always known that the impeachment process is completely political. But, even in the Clinton mess, at least there was a violation of the law, even though it was a mistake on the part of the Republicans to use it as a political cudgel. Lying about your sex life is no more an impeachable offense than having no respect for Nadler. Or Schiff.
If, as the President has said, impeachment is simply going to become a part of the tool box for the most vicious of the elements of both parties, then we need to give them the political scare of their lives—kind of like Boris Johnson just gave the Labour party in Britain.
There is a classic example of what happens when you use political tricks to ignore the will of the people. Three years ago, the people in Great Britain voted to get out of the European Union. The Parliament screwed around for three years. Finally, the people had enough and in the recent election gave Prime Minister Boris Johnson a massive majority with instructions to get-r-done as Larry the Cable Guy would say it.
If the morons I wrote of above keep it up here, what do you think might happen in November of 2020?
Medicare for All (M4A) retained its prominent place on the stage at the latest Democratic debate. In its purest Bernie Sanders form, concurrent with abolishing private health insurance, U.S. residents would be enrolled in “Medicare.” The program would pay for unlimited “medically necessary” health expenses, including pharmaceuticals, mental health and substance abuse treatment, vision, dental, and hearing services, and long-term care with no out-of-pocket costs. Some supporters were scared off by the $32 trillion over 10 years price tag. Not to be outdone, Elizabeth Warren’s “I’m with Bernie” plan comes with a $52 trillion over 10 years price tag including up to $34 trillion in new government spending. Our country’s entire yearly budget is a mere $3.5 trillion. For perspective, if your salary is $40,000 per year it would take 25 million years to earn 1 trillion dollars. As M4A’s dark side emerged, the candidates distanced themselves from Bernie-care.
Elimination of private insurance? Whoa, Nellie! Over 156 million Americans —half the country—are covered by employer-sponsored health insurance plans and another 23 million have private individual policies. And most of these folks like that arrangement. Then there was pushback from some unions who had excellent health insurance policies for which they had bargained and given up other perks.
In the June debate the candidates raised their hands indicating they would abolish private health insurance. Now Mayor Buttigieg wants to “unify the American people around, creating a version of Medicare, making it available to anybody who wants it, but without the divisive step of ordering people onto it whether they want to or not.” Vice president Biden, noting his desire to keep patient choice stated, “we should build on Obamacare … adding a Medicare option in that plan, and not make people choose.” Of course, Obamacare caused a rise in premiums, a decrease in choice of insurance coverage, and like any large government-run program was prone to mismanagement and waste.
Possible financing mechanisms were screaming for a deep dive. One analysis concluded that most Americans would suffer financially if M4A were implemented as proposed. An analysis by a bipartisan think tank estimated a 32 per cent increase in payroll taxes would be needed to fund M4A. Everyone—even the working poor—would have more payroll taxes extracted from their paycheck. The analysis concluded that most households would pay more in new taxes than they would save by eliminating their current spending on private health insurance and out-of-pocket medical expenses.
Senator Warren tries to hide the ugly truth by railing about the evil rich who would be taxed down to their underwear. Take the deceptively worded “2-cent” annual tax for households with more than $50 million in assets. If you have $51 million in assets, most probably tied up in your business, you’d have to cough up (.02)($1,000,000) or $20,000, not 2 cents. The devil’s spawn, aka our 535 billionaires, would be subject to a 6 percent annual tax on their assets. Who will be the next target when the government has driven the assets to a sunny island in the Caribbean? Finally, raising the corporate income tax back up to 35 percent likely would result in businesses paying lower wages to current employees or cutting back on hiring to compensate for the increased tax burden.
During the latest debate, Senator Warren retreated from her “all-in” approach, asserting she would first provide Medicare at no cost to “everybody under the age of 18, everybody who has a family of four income less than $50,000”—about 135 million people. Second, she would lower the Medicare age to 50 and expand Medicare coverage to include vision, dental, and long-term care. In the third year, “when people have had a chance to feel it and taste it and live with it, we’re going to vote and we’re going to want Medicare for all.”
Senator Sanders owns that payroll taxes would be doubled or tripled and proposes a 4 percent surtax on families earning more than $29,000. So if you earn $60,000, you’d have to pay (.04)($31,000) or $1,240, enough for a whole year’s membership in a private Direct Primary Care plan. Senator Sanders, staying true to his principles, is sticking with unadulterated Medicare for All with its financial warts.
Even those who are numb to government over-spending can see the broader problem of inviting Uncle Sam into their lives in exchange for a Medicare card in their wallet. Any remaining privacy is erased. Our medical records would be furnished to the Department of Health and Human Services and the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology. Physicians and patients would be robbed of their autonomy and choice by medical care policies set by the government monopoly. Lack of competition leads to lower quality and fewer services. Coverage becomes an illusion.
Medicare for All’s beauty is only skin deep and its ugly goes to the bone.
Dr. Singleton is a board-certified anesthesiologist. She is Immediate Past President of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS). Her opinions are her own. This is an edited column that originally appeared at www.pennypressnv.com, reprinted with permission.
For a long time, I have mostly written in this space about the ridiculous Democrats in the House who, tilting at left-wing partisan windmills, are heading in the direction of impeaching President Trump thus almost guaranteeing his re-election in 2020 since there is no chance the Senate will remove him.
This week, however, I have stumbled into an equally ridicules situation which has no relationship with what is currently happening in Washington but could have a serious impact on America’s largest employer—small business.
You may have seen some TV commercials for a non-bank lender named Kabbage. It features actor Gary Cole playing a spokesman from 10 minutes in the future talking to some small business people. After they get the funding they needed, Cole pops in as even further in the future after they got the Gundelfinger Account.
My company has used Kabbage for something like three years.
It’s not a huge credit line but we have made every payment on a timely basis and they have never had any problem with us.
On December 2, we made our normal monthly payment. A few days later, I checked to make sure it was recorded properly. It was. But there was a note on the app screen which said, “You are not currently eligible to take a loan. Call us at 88xx-xxxx to fix this issue.”
So I did.
What they told me was that there was a 60 day hold on our account, the computer makes these decisions and there is no appeal because they don’t know the reason that the computer made the decision.
I asked to speak to an executive who authorized the computer to make that decision.
“Sir,” said the young lady, “That team is not customer facing.”
Not customer facing?
Now I need to make two points here. Nobody is obligated to lend you money any more that anybody is obligated to borrow money. This is a business transaction. You lend me money and I pay it back with interest.
But good business practice dictates that if you make a decision like that—which, by the way, you have every right to make—you pick up the phone and FACE THE CUSTOMER! Maybe your precious computer got the wrong—or no—information.
Kabbage is part of a new group of financial institutions called fintech.
It’s the latest new thing.
They have a proprietary algorithm so they can evaluate risk and make loans fast.
That’s all well and good. And, as welcome as that may be to help fund America’s largest employer, a lender you cannot talk to is nobody you want to do business with.
Suppose, as an example, you are coming up on a payroll and are just a bit short—something which is not unusual in the wide world of small business. You know you have that available in your Kabbage line. Only, when you go to use it, there’s a note, placed there by a computer for a reason nobody knows that you cannot use the money. That’s the sort of thing that can break a small business.
What was point number two that I was going to make?
Only that I made it clear that I was not mad at the nice young customer facing lady. I was mad at her company and then only because information is as important as cash in small business and if Kabbage can’t tell you why, it’s very difficult to want to continue to do business with them—even after the 60 day hold is over. Resigning the Gundelfinger account is a real possibility.
Now, we can get back to politics. But I’ll bet that Kabbage CEO Rob Frohwein will see the logic in fixing this problem long before the Democrat morons in the House figure out that they are hamsters making the wheel go around. And I mean no insult to hamsters.