Why Are TPA & TPP Being Referred to as Obamatrade?

By: Nancy Salvato

In an article by Connor Wolf called This Is The Difference Between TPP And TPA (Hint: They Are Not The Same Thing), he explains that these two bills are linked together because Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) is a means to fast track passage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). I am confused by this line of reasoning because as a stand-alone bill, TPA is intended to provide transparency to all trade negotiations by soliciting public and congressional input throughout the process, however, TPP as a stand-alone bill, is a behemoth and most of the information to which the public has access has been leaked. Furthermore, it was negotiated behind closed doors. According to the verbiage of TPA, if TPP is not negotiated using TPA guidelines, the fast track option is negated. So why do news outlets and a wide range of legislators portray these two bills disingenuously? Bundling the TPA and TPP as one idea called Obamatrade is no different than bundling immigration reform and border security, which are two separate issues. One is about drug cartels and terrorism and the other is about how we manage people who want to immigrate to the United States.

Challenges TPA hopes to remedy throughout the negotiating process and in resulting trade agreements have parallels to challenges facing the US and its allies when agreeing to make war on the foreign stage. While one president may assure allies that US troops will assist in gaining and maintaining freedom, i.e., Iraq, a new administration or congress may change the terms, leaving a foreign country abandoned, with the understanding that the US cannot be relied upon to meet its agreed upon obligations. When negotiating foreign trade agreements, this same realization comes into play when negotiations that took place in good faith are undermined by a new administration or congress that change the terms. TPA hopes to create a set of consistent negotiating objectives when hammering out trade agreements, allowing agreements to transcend administrations and congresses.

The following excerpts from a letter written to President Obama from Sen. Jeff Sessions (R, AL) would alarm any person who understands the division of powers and checks and balances built into our rule of law.         Posted in Exclusive–Sessions to Obama: Why Are You Keeping Obama Trade’s New Global Governance Secret? Sessions explains:

“Under fast-track, Congress transfers its authority to the executive and agrees to give up several of its most basic powers.”

“These concessions include: the power to write legislation, the power to amend legislation, the power to fully consider legislation on the floor, the power to keep debate open until Senate cloture is invoked, and the constitutional requirement that treaties receive a two-thirds vote.”

Understanding that Senators Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and Representative Paul Ryan have gotten behind TPA, it would be short sited and irresponsible not to probe further into why they aren’t exposing these violations of our rule of law.

According to The Hill’s Daniel Horowitz in TPA’s ‘Whoa, if true’ moment, Cruz and Ryan have explained, “most of the content of the bill is actually requirements on the executive branch to disclose information to Congress and consult with Congress on the negotiations.” Congress would be informed on the front end, as opposed to debating and making changes to what was already negotiated. This is important because as Cato Institute’s Scott Lincicome and K. William Watson explain in Don’t Drink the Obamatrade Snake Oil:

Although trade agreements provide a mechanism for overcoming political opposition to free trade, they also create new political problems of their own, most of which stem from the inherent conflict in the U.S. Constitution between the power granted to Congress to “regulate commerce with foreign nations” (Article I, Section 8) and that granted to the president to negotiate treaties (Article II, Section 2) and otherwise act as the “face” of U.S. international relations. In short, the executive branch is authorized to negotiate trade agreements that escape much of the legislative sausage-making that goes in Washington, but, consistent with the Constitution, any such deals still require congressional approval—a process that could alter the agreement’s terms via congressional amendments intended to appease influential constituents. The possibility that, after years of negotiations, an unfettered Congress could add last-minute demands to an FTA (or eliminate its biggest benefits) discourages all but the most eager U.S. trading partners to sign on to any such deal.

TPA, also known as “fast track,” was designed to fix this problem. TPA is an arrangement between the U.S. executive and legislative branches, under which Congress agrees to hold a timely, up-or-down vote (i.e., no amendments) on future trade agreements in exchange for the president agreeing to follow certain negotiating objectives set by Congress and to consult with the legislative branch before, during, and after FTA negotiations. In essence, Congress agrees to streamline the approval process as long as the president negotiates agreements that it likes.

For a really good argument for fast tracking, watch the video that can be found here:

Here’s why the TPP is such a big deal 03:24

K. William Watson explains in What’s Really in the New Trade Promotion Authority Bill? TPA will actually bring more transparency to the negotiating process:

The current bill would require the administration to provide public summaries of its negotiating positions. This will give the public something concrete to debate without having to resort to conspiracy claims or wild theories. It will also help everyone see more clearly how negotiators intend to implement the negotiating objectives of TPA.

It will also require that every member of Congress has access to the full text of the negotiations from beginning to end.

If TPA actually does what it is intended, a bill like TPP could not possibly be held to an up or down vote because it would not have been negotiated using the processes as outlined. Or could it? This administration passed Obamacare, which is a tax; they wanted comprehensive immigration reform and secure borders yet they openly courted Latin American countries to bring their kids to the border; they said they’d be the most transparent administration but there has been a dramatic lack of transparency, one must pass the bill before knowing what’s in it.

Perhaps what it all boils down to is what Rick Helfenbein writes about in Trade promotion authority, a Washington drama:

There are other conservatives like Rep. Walter Jones (R-N.C.) who remain adamantly opposed to giving the president (presumed) additional authority. Jones said of Obama and TPA: “Given his record, I am astonished that some of my colleagues are so eager to fork over even more of their constitutional authority to the [p]resident for him to abuse.”

While this article addresses the issue of TPA, it doesn’t begin to address the arguments against TPP, for example The Guardian’s C. Robert Gibson and Taylor Channing’s conclusion that, “Fast-tracking the TPP, meaning its passage through Congress without having its contents available for debate or amendments, was only possible after lots of corporate money exchanged hands with senators.” That is an article for another day.

Nancy Salvato directs the Constitutional Literacy Program for BasicsProject.org, a non-profit, non-partisan research and educational project whose mission is to re-introduce the American public to the basic elements of our constitutional heritage while providing non-partisan, fact-based information on relevant socio-political issues important to our country. She is a graduate of the National Endowment for the Humanities’ National Academy for Civics and Government. She is the author of “Keeping a Republic: An Argument for Sovereignty.” She also serves as a Senior Editor for NewMediaJournal.us and is a contributing writer to Constituting America. Her education career includes teaching students from pre-k to graduate school.  She has also worked as an administrator in higher education. Her private sector efforts focus on the advancement of constitutional literacy.


The Marxist/Gay “Takedown” of America

By: Cliff Kincaid
America’s Survival

Paul Kengor’s new book, Takedown: From Communists to Progressives, How the Left Has Sabotaged Family and Marriage, examines “cultural Marxism,” the application of Marxism to culture rather than the economic sphere. Kengor’s book, available from WorldNetDaily and other sites, outlines how this movement to “fundamentally transform” America has reached its zenith under the presidency of Barack Obama and the Democratic Party. Things have happened so quickly, he notes, that “everyday Americans” have even been conditioned to embrace major aspects of this revolutionary change.


Marilyn Mosby’s Father Was A ‘Crooked Cop,’ Police Officer Grandfather Sued For Racial Discrimination

By: Denise Simon

Marilyn Mosby has made it widely known that she comes from a long line of police officers, five generations of law enforcement to be exact. The 35-year-old Baltimore city state’s attorney’s father, mother, grandfather, and uncles have all at some point worked as cops — a history which Mosby cites to push back against the claim — as Fox News’ Griff Jenkins put it during a recent interview — that Baltimore’s finest believe the rookie prosecutor does not have their backs because of how she’s handled the Freddie Gray case.

“I come from five generations of police officers,” Mosby responded to Jenkins. “That’s absurd.”

But while it’s true that numerous Mosby family members have worn the badge, a thorough look reveals a more complicated picture of that law enforcement background than she has let on in public.

Start with Mosby’s father, a former Boston police officer named Alan James. In 1989, James and a fellow officer named Dwight Allen were arrested and charged with assault and battery for their role in several armed robberies in a high-crime area of Boston.

According to a Boston Globe article at the time, James, Allen and another suspect flashed badges and brandished guns while shaking down drug dealers. The officers identified themselves as “renegade police” and were reportedly drunk. During one robbery, one of the men fired his gun, though nobody was hurt.

James was arrested while on duty at a police station in Dorcester but was acquitted of charges in the case in 1991. After acquittal he was immediately fired for conduct unbecoming an officer, according to the Baltimore Brew, an independent newspaper.

Mosby has not publicly acknowledged this mark on her family’s policing legacy. Though, according to the Brew, she acknowledged her father’s troubled past in a biography written for her campaign for state’s attorney.

“My dad was a crooked cop,” Mosby said, according to the document, which was not released to the public. “He confiscated drugs and money from the dealers on a regular basis.”

Then there is Mosby’s maternal grandfather, Prescott Thompson. Thompson, who went by Rick, sued the Boston police department in 1986, claiming that he was the target of racial discrimination after he was denied a job.

According to a 1994 Boston Globe profile, Thompson began working as a Boston cop in 1964. But in 1971, he suffered what seemed like a career-ending injury when a car battery exploded in his face, causing him to lose his right eye. With a glass eye replacement, Thompson remained on the force — but did not work — until 1976 when he reluctantly accepted a retirement offer.

Thompson was not content to stay off the force, however. As the Globe put it policing was in Thompson’s blood. But his dreams were dashed when his application was denied because of his glass eye.

“Sight in two eyes is a bonafide occupation qualification for the position sought,” Francis Roache, Boston’s police commissioner at the time, wrote in a letter to Thompson.

But Thompson saw something else at play, so he filed a lawsuit claiming he was not hired because he was black. In his lawsuit, Thompson argued that four white Boston police officers with sight in only one eye worked for the Boston police department. But the department’s personnel director responded by pointing out that those four officers worked in non-traditional police jobs. One was a clerk, and another was a hazardous materials inspector.

Thompson had a traumatic experience with police well before he became a cop himself. In the Globe profile, Thompson said that he was inspired to become a cop after an incident when he was 12 or 13 involving four plain-clothes officers. Thompson said he was running an errand for his family when the officers slammed him up against a brick wall. They said he matched the description of a purse snatcher. When the officers realized their error, they let him go. The incident stuck with Thompson. As the Globe reported, “he swore that he would become a police officer, and that he would prevent that sort of treatment from happening to another black child.”

During her many public statements about her family’s law enforcement history, Mosby has not mentioned either her father’s troubles or her grandfather’s grievances with Boston police.

She has also not acknowledged that Richard Miller, her uncle and Thompson’s son, filed his own discrimination suit against the Massachusetts state police.

According to the Globe, Miller filed a lawsuit in 1981 claiming that he was the target of discrimination. That case was settled in Miller’s favor, and he was awarded a $211,587 judgment.

Asked whether those many negative experiences have shaped how she thinks about policing and police departments, Mosby indicated that they have not.

“As a young child, what I saw was how hard my family worked,” Mosby said in a statement to The Daily Caller. “I have nothing but respect and admiration for all law enforcement officers who make tremendous sacrifices every day to keep our communities safe.”

There is much more. Marilyn Mosby is connected to both Johnetta Elzie and DeRay McKesson. These 2 people were at the core of the Ferguson protests and they are connected to the White House and the Department of Justice in a most favorable standard.

Late last year, in December, the White House held a series of sessions with hand chosen guests to map out the Presidential Task Force for 21st Century Policing. Additionally the White House has endorsed and fully supported a Non-Governmental Organization called Teach For America of which both Elzie and McKesson are former alumni.

Just for proof, the series of links below describe the fact that the protests beginning with Ferguson and later Baltimore, New York and McKinny, Texas are headed by groups that are supported and deployed by the Department of Justice and the White House.

DeRay McKesson Bio offered for the WH task force.

Johnetta Elzie and DeRay McKesson took a medic class for tear gas.

The White House Task Force, note McKesson’s committee assignment.

Teach for America not only provides teaching jobs in designated towns but provides government grants to pay tuition and then offers to waive student debt.

Student loan forgiveness.

Trayvon’s mother is part of the movement. “Know Justice Know Peace”

Teach for America full access to the White House.

Teach for America Summit in St. Louis. White House Fact Sheet for Teachers.

Then there is Amnesty International, funded by the U.S. government and by George Soros, both Elzie and McKesson are on the payroll.

DeRay McKesson testimony at the White House.

DeRay McKesson teaching resume in the Baltimore school system.

University of Miami session Know Justice Know Peace

There is much more, but you by now understand, this is a scripted operation designed, deployed and managed by the White House and the Holder Justice Department. And so it goes.


Dubai-based Gulftainer and Its Terrorist Ties

By: Terresa Monroe-Hamilton

Gulftainer, a Middle East-based company, is opening its first American cargo terminal today at
Port Canaveral. The new terminal is expected to have a $630 million impact on the local economy.
(VIDEO STILL/Gulftainer)

Gulftainer Co. Ltd., an Emirati container terminal operator, opened its first US terminal today in Port Canaveral, Florida. A number of staunch conservatives showed up to protest the opening and with good cause.

The terminal, which has leased land at Port Canaveral for 35 years, marks the first significant containerized cargo operation there and has the potential to expand to other ports. With two gantry cranes and 20 acres of container storage space, Gulftainer estimates that terminal could handle up to 200,000 TEUs—or the equivalent of 200,000 20-foot-long shipping containers—each year.

Gulftainer hopes to capitalize on Central Florida’s growing role as a logistics hub, with inland warehouses, rail access to the Northeast and Midwest and land for infrastructure development. Periodically docked at Port Canaveral are nuclear assets for the US military and NATO, so this is also a national security issue.

PORT CANAVERAL, FL April 22, 1994 A port quarter view of the British nuclear-powered
ballistic missile submarine HMS Vanguard (SSBN-50) arriving in port. NASA’s giant Vehicle Assembly
Building (VAB) at the Kennedy Space Center and various space launch pads can be seen in the distance.
UAE’s Gulftainer is building an intermodal container terminal on the same side of the port as the
U.S. Navy submarine base. (Image credit: U.S. Navy/OS2 John Bourvia/Wikimedia Commons)

Map of Port Canaveral, Florida showing Gulftainer’s area of operations, US Navy Trident
submarine base and Canaveral Air Force Station.

Peter Richards, Gulftainer’s managing director, said he has been trying to bring Gulftainer, which operates container terminals in Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Russia, North Africa, Brazil and elsewhere, to the US for about two years. Founded in 1976, Gulftainer is a subsidiary of privately-held conglomerate, Crescent Enterprises, based in the United Arab Emirates. Notice that the countries where this company operates have terrorist ties and/or are hostile to the US. Since Dubai Ports World created a ruckus in 2005 when trying to take control of a number of US ports, Gulftainer has been hesitant to enter the market in the US. But with the Progressive/Marxist atmosphere of the Obama Administration and the blatant colluding with the Muslim Brotherhood here in our government, the time seemed just about right for allowing an Islamic entity to move in and control a major US port, I guess.

Gulftainer is a $100 million investment and simply put, should not be allowed. Since we are in military conflicts across the globe with radical Islamists and countries such as UAE and Qatar are known to have deep terrorist ties, this company should have been thoroughly vetted before allowing them in as an owner of a strategic port. Instead, few have looked into them and they are heralded as an outstanding company.

The promise of new jobs should not overshadow the fact that this company is a security risk. And with nuclear subs docking there, can we afford that kind of gamble? Port leaders expect the new business to create 2,000 jobs with an impact of more than $630 million on the local economy of Port Canaveral.

Perhaps we should listen to those there that are questioning the sanity of allowing a Middle Eastern company to control a port that is of huge significance to the US:

But some opponents, including a California congressman, have raised concerns that the company’s ties to [the] Middle East make it a bad choice to be located near the Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station and other military installations.

“We’re not bad people as I try to emphasize,” said Peter Richards, Gulftainer’s managing director. “We’re good people here for the good of the community (and) the good of the port. And I think in the next six months, they’re going to see that. We’re going to actually generate Canaveral into a good logistics hub.”

Some bloggers have even claimed Gulftainer helped ship weapons to terrorist groups, but the company said that’s not true.

“The garbage that they put about us being linked to terrorist groups, where do they come off?” Richards said. “I don’t understand how anybody can do that. We’re trusted by 15 governments worldwide. We actually cooperate with your own military. We actually provide the logistics for the American forces in the Middle East.”

Port Canaveral leaders are coming to the defense of the company.

“We’ve selected them because they are good, quality people,” said John Walsh, CEO of Port Canaveral. “They are one of the best terminal operators in the world, and then to have members of our community say things that are inappropriate, racist and profiling. To me, that’s not OK.”

And exactly how do you know they are such ‘good’ people? And is it really racist to question the terrorist ties of a company moving into your community? Sounds like those so-called leaders are telling residents to just shut up and go away – that they should know their place and leave big business to the elites as it should be. I don’t think so. Must of been a lot of silver that crossed the palms of leaders and business icons there in Port Canaveral. They’ve been blinded by the shiny light of corruption.

Gulftainer is adjacent to a US Navy nuclear submarine base and NASA’s Kennedy Space Center. It has allegedly been shipping weapons through the Port of Umm Qasr to two Iranian-backed terrorist militia groups in Iraq, the Badr Brigades and Asaeib Ahl al-Haq (AAH), according to a leak from Iraq General Port Company officials in Basra to Iraqi media.

According to the 1776 Channel, who has done yeoman’s work on this subject, Port Canaveral is home to critical national security operations and infrastructure. A plethora of space and defense installations and programs, many of them highly classified, are situated either inside the port or within the immediate vicinity:

• NASA Kennedy Space Center and Visitor Complex
• Patrick Air Force Base
• Cape Canaveral Air Force Station
• US Navy Trident submarine base (Trident Turning Basin)
• Top secret Air Force space plane
• National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) spy satellites
• Department of Defense/Boeing GPS satellites
• SpaceX resupply missions to the International Space Station
• SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket
• NASA Orion deep space capsule project and test launches
• United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy Rocket
• United Launch Alliance Atlas V Rocket
• Nuclear submarines resupply operations
• Lockheed Martin Fleet Ballistic Missile Eastern Ranger Operations
• Air Force Technical Applications Center (AFTAC) – Seismic, hydroacoustic and satellite monitoring of nuclear treaty signatory nations
• Air Force Space Command/45th Space Wing
• Air Force 920th Rescue Wing (Combat Search and Rescue)
• Craig Technologies Aerospace and Defense Manufacturing Center
• Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS)
• US Coast Guard Station Port Canaveral
• Department of Homeland Security – Customs and Border Protection
• Numerous defense contractors (too many too list)

This deal has actually alarmed the military and is raising the eyebrows of a number of security experts. It was approved by Treasury Secretary Jacob ‘Jack’ Lew, a former senior adviser to President Clinton. Gulftainer’s exclusive arrangement with Port Canaveral was negotiated in secret under the code name ‘Project Pelican.’ Evidently, you have to sign the deal before you can know what is in it there in Port Canaveral. Sound familiar? And when all else fails, pull the race card to shut people up.

THE RED SEA – MARCH 5, 2014 – IDF forces seized an Iranian weapons shipment intended for
terrorists in the Gaza Strip during the early morning hours of March 5, 2014. Israel Navy Commander
Maj. Gen. Ram Rothberg led the operation from aboard the Israeli ship and Chief of the General Staff
Lt. Gen. Benjamin “Benny” Gantz oversaw it from the Israel Navy operations room.
(Image credit: Wikimedia Commons/Flikr/Israel Defense Forces)

Gulftainer USA (GT USA) is a unit of UAE’s privately-held intermodal container terminal operator Gulftainer, which in turn is a unit of Crescent Enterprises, part of the Crescent Group conglomerate. The Jafar family owns both of these and has close ties to former President Bill Clinton. The UN is also tied to Gulftainer and just recently it was strongly suspected that Gulftainer was involved with Iran in shipping rockets to Gaza. The shipment were seized by Israel and the reports are classified, so it cannot be proven (yet) that this is the case. But there is an excellent chance that Gulftainer is involved in smuggling weapons and arms for and to terrorists.

The course of the Iranian weapons shipment. (Image credit: Israel Defense Forces)

It would seem that not only do we have people in the US in the highest levels of government that could not pass a background check to clean toilets… we also have Middle Eastern countries being waived into sensitive ports without so much as the most minor of security checks. That’s like sitting on a ticking time bomb and praying that it won’t blow up like a jihadist in a Palestinian work accident. It’s insane. Port Canaveral might want to consider their hasty decision before a nuclear weapon glides into that port that could be used against the US. Just sayin’.

There are brave folks in Florida standing up to this and protesting. I’d like to close with a few pictures from this morning, courtesy of Andrea Shea King of the Radio Patriot:


The Times’ and the Clintons’ Converging Conflicts of Interest

By: Roger Aronoff
Accuracy in Media

The apparent conflicts of interest that the various Clinton family initiatives create constitute a shameful example of media complicity with the left and the Democratic Party. Accuracy in Media has written time and again about the incestuous relationships forged between the Clintons and the media. For example, George Stephanopoulos recently interrogated the author of a book critical of the Clinton’s pay-for-play foundation activities without revealing to his viewers, or his employer, that he had donated to the Clinton Foundation and participated in some of their events.

As we have documented, many media corporations also donate to the Clinton Global Initiative.

Yes, the Clintons do some good work through their various projects, but the Clinton Foundation itself spent only 9.9 percent of its funds on direct charitable grants between 2011 and 2013, according to The Federalist. What purposes, therefore, do the other parts of its spending support, besides their five-star lifestyle?

The latest revelations to turn up in this mutual backscratching world of the Democrat-Media Complex was reported by The Washington Free Beacon’s Alana Goodman, who happens to be a former AIM intern.

“A little-known private foundation controlled by Bill and Hillary Clinton donated $100,000 to the New York Times’ charitable fund in 2008, the same year the newspaper’s editorial page endorsed Clinton in the Democratic presidential primary, according to tax documents reviewed” by the Free Beacon, Goodman reports.

Mrs. Clinton received the Times’ endorsement in January 2008, over then-candidate Barack Obama. The Times has refused to tell Goodman when in 2008 the donation was made.

Was this donation it made before, or after, the endorsement? Did one of them affect the other?

There may be no smoking gun to find, no email that actually says, “We, the Clinton Foundation, will donate to your foundation, and in return, you will endorse Hillary’s presidential campaign.” However, one might argue that a pattern of behavior is emerging with the Clintons. In fact, this pattern of behavior goes back many years.

Questions might also be asked about the actions of Mexican tycoon Carlos Slim Helu, and his relationships with The New York Times and the Clintons. This year Slim increased his share of Times shares from 7 percent to 17 percent. Back in September of 2008 Slim and his family acquired a 6.4 percent stake in the Times.

“Mr. Slim has a history of buying depressed assets he can later sell at a profit, and several analysts familiar with his investments say they see the purchase of the Times Company stock in that vein,” reported The Times in 2008.

Slim has been a long-time contributor to Clinton Foundation causes. On June 21, 2007, President Bill Clinton, Slim, and Canadian mining magnate Frank Giustra worked together on the Clinton Giustra Sustainable Growth Initiative (CGSGI). Both Giustra and Slim committed $100 million apiece.

Giustra has been the subject of controversy following revelations about the Uranium One deal, which resulted in the Russians acquiring 20 percent of America’s annual uranium production capacity.

The Times’s coverage of the Uranium One deal mentions the CGSGI and a number of other donors—but it leaves Slim out.

“As if to underscore the point, five months later Mr. Giustra held a fund-raiser for the Clinton Giustra Sustainable Growth Initiative, a project aimed at fostering progressive environmental and labor practices in the natural resources industry, to which he had pledged $100 million,” reported Jo Becker and Mike McIntire. “The star-studded gala, at a conference center in Toronto, featured performances by Elton John and Shakira and celebrities like Tom Cruise, John Travolta and Robin Williams encouraging contributions from the many so-called F.O.F.s—Friends of Frank—in attendance, among them Mr. [Ian] Telfer.”

So many people were mentioned, but not Slim, and his pledge—even though he was featured in the Clinton Foundation press release. Was that not relevant to the Times investigation, or their article?

However, Slim “lent the Times Company $250 million, at an interest rate of 14 percent, in 2009; at the time, with the world economy struggling and credit tight, the company looked to be in peril,” reported the Times earlier this year. “The loan was repaid in 2011, more than three years before it was due.”

The Telmex Foundation, founded by Slim, “provided between $250,000 and $500,000 for a speech by Hillary Clinton,” reported The Washington Post last month, regarding previously undisclosed Clinton Foundation payments. The article said that the Clinton Foundation revealed “that it has received as much as $26.4 million in previously undisclosed payments from major corporations, universities, foreign sources and other groups.”

Even Politico’s Dylan Byers is crying foul at this point, and implying hypocrisy by the Times. “The Free Beacon story is preposterous from start to finish,” Times spokesperson Eileen Murphy told him.

“The Times is no stranger to reporting on possible lines of influence without hard evidence of causation,” Byers writes, referring to Schweizer-inspired stories.

“Yet the Times’ response—or lack thereof—to the Free Beacon’s inquiries suggests that the paper of record holds little regard for [the Free Beacon’s] brand of journalism,” he writes. “In both cases, the Times did not respond to Free Beacon reporters when they emailed requesting comment. Then, following publication of the articles, the Times responded to inquiries from the On Media blog while continuing to disregard emails from Free Beacon reporters.”

“NO donation to The Neediest Cases Fund has ever had any impact on a Times endorsement,” Murphy told the Free Beacon. “We’re not commenting further.”

The Free Beacon later reported on Slim’s connections to the Times, and noted that additional Clinton Foundation donors may include James A. Kohlberg and Mark Thompson. The former is on the Times’ board of directors, and the latter is the CEO of The New York Times Company. Murphy told the Free Beacon that Thompson told her directly that he had not given anything to the Clinton Foundation, but one “Mark Thompson” is listed within the Post’s searchable database of foundation donors, as is one “James A. Kohlberg.”

ABC’s spokeswoman, Heather Riley, who managed Stephanopoulos’ public relations crisis, turned to none other than Byers to manage the ABC host’s scandal. The Free Beacon’s Andrew Stiles then exposed on May 15 that Riley had “worked in the White House press office from 1997 to 2000,” including serving “as a press contact for then-First Lady Hillary Clinton.”

“This is what happens when you have a corrupt media that don’t play fair, but instead put their thumb on the fairness scale to tilt it towards their partisan interests,” I recently wrote.

It is also said to be a problem when corporations try to influence elections.

If the left gets their way, all corporations, except those in the media business, would be severely restricted from supporting candidates or issues. Only corporations like The New York Times Corporation, or NBC Comcast Universal would be allowed to offer round-the-clock, unlimited support for their favorite candidates. You see, those are the good corporations, not motivated by greed or self-interest, or a political agenda—only by the public good, which in their collective wisdom means electing nearly all Democrats—and the more left-wing, the better.


The Council Has Spoken!! Our Watcher’s Council Results – 06/12/15

The Watcher’s Council

The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match-up.

No man’s life, liberty, or property are safe while the legislature is in session. – Mark Twain

Politics, n. A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles. The conduct of public affairs for private advantage. – Ambrose Bierce, The Devil’s Dictionary

This is the Most Transparent Administration in History. – President Barack Obama


This week’s winning essay, The Right Planet’s, The Trans-Pacific Partnership and the March Toward ‘Global Governance’ — #StopFastTrack. is a great run down of the secret treaties and protocols the Obama Administration is trying to shove through congress. Here’s a slice:

Free trade. Sounds great, huh! I mean, who doesn’t like free trade? Right? Yeah, I’m all for free trade, too. The problem is that since the end of World War Two, starting with General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), the United States has entered into a number of so-called “free trade” agreements (GATT, NAFTA, WTO, FTAA, SPP, etc.) that have decimated our manufacturing base and sent thousands of jobs offshore. Textile and steel industries have literally been wiped out.

As a woodworker, I always told people, if you want quality furniture that’s made in the good ole USofA, visit High Point, North Carolina. High Point was literally the furniture capitol of the United States for many years—with shops that had been in business for generations, employing highly skilled crafstman. Not anymore. High Point has literally become a ghost town. Most furniture manufacturing has relocated to China and elsewhere. I can even begin to tell you how much this saddens me. But I can only imagine how much it must sadden the people who had to shut up shop in High Point.

These so-called “free trade” agreements have little or nothing to do with free trade. Scott Callan and Janet Thomas wrote in their book Environmental Economics and Management: Theory, Policy, and Applications: “The multilateral trading system established under GATT is referred to as the set of WTO agreements (comprising some 30,000 pages), which are essentially rules of trade established through negotiation among its members.” Yes, you read that right … 30,000 pages! When one begins to review the provisions within these trade deals, it becomes obvious—at least to this author—that they have more to do with “global governance” than they do with free enterprise. But it’s always sold under the banner of “peace and prosperity.”

Back in 1994, Sir James Goldsmith, in a prophetic interview with Charlie Rose (see video below), predicted serious ramifications for the U.S. economy if the Clinton Administration followed through with GATT. At the time of the interview, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) had only been in effect for a few months. Appearing on the same show with Goldsmith was economist Laura Tyson, former Chair of the U.S. President’s Council of Economic Advisers, who argued the pro-GATT position for the then-Clinton Administration.

Since the passage of NAFTA, the United States has lost one out of three of our manufacturing jobs—nearly six million of them. The federal workforce now employs more people than the manufacturing sector. Now, from the same people that gave us GATT and NAFTA, Congress is ready to grant President Obama trade-promotion authority (TPA, also known as “fast track”) to negotiate trade deals—namely, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). Obama promised during his presidential campaign to redraft NAFTA; a promise he has failed to fulfill. But now we are being promised that TPP (a.k.a. ObamaTrade) will be different. If you like your free trade, you can keep your free trade. But I digress.

Oh, but it only gets worse. As if TPP and TTIP aren’t bad enough, another far-reaching agreement that most Americans have probably never heard of is the Trade In Services Agreement (TISA).

The New American reports:

Here comes another secret ObamaTrade treaty with enormous ramifications for every American. Wikileaks has released 17 documents related to a mammoth trade agreement the Obama administration has been negotiating that will, purportedly, cover 80 percent of the U.S. economy. It’s called TISA, the acronym for Trade In Services Agreement….

As with the TPP and TTIP, the TISA treaty negotiations have been ongoing for several years in total secrecy, despite the Obama administration’s absurd claims that the process is completely “transparent.” Members of Congress and the American public are excluded from the process and are not allowed access to the document texts, texts that will become binding upon United States citizens once they are rushed through Congress on the TPA fast track. U.S. courts, or tribunals created under TISA, or World Trade Organization (WTO) tribunals are virtually certain to use TISA — as they have already done using NAFTA — to rule that U.S. laws are illegal and must be changed.

More at the link.

In our non-Council category, the winner was Mark Steyn with Birth Of The New, submitted by Bookworm Room. In his usual tongue in cheek fashion, Steyn examines the Caitlyn/Bruce Jenner story, the neo-fascist intimidation perpetrated on people who even mildly question certain aspects of it and the cultural ramifications of that intimidation.

Here are this week’s full results. Only Bookworm Room was unable to vote, but was not subject to the usual 2/3 vote penalty for not voting:

Council Winners:

Non-Council Winners:

See you next week!

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Sen. Ted Cruz on the Hugh Hewitt Show

For the difference between TPA and TPP and Ted Cruz’s view on both, start listening at 10:03.

Cruz: Support for the TPA doesn’t mean approval for the trade agreement

The trade fight in the House looks bad for the White House this morning, while no one still knows what the actual trade agreement will look like in its final form. Ted Cruz explained to Hugh Hewitt that support for the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) didn’t mean approval for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a point he wants to emphasize so much that Cruz put it on his website:

Historically, since FDR virtually every president has had fast track authority. What fast track provides is simply if a free trade agreement is negotiated, that Congress will vote on it up or down without amendments and history has demonstrated for the last 80 years that the only way to get free trade agreements adopted is to have fast track. That if there is no fast track, free trade agreements do not end up being negotiated.

TPA is what the Senate voted on recently. I voted in favor of fast track because I support free trade. I think free trade benefits America. It creates jobs — opening markets to our farmers, to our ranchers, to our manufacturers, improves economic growth. In Texas alone, roughly 3 million jobs depend on international trade.

And if you support free trade, the only way history has shown free trade agreements get negotiated is through fast track.

Now there is a second issue which has caused a great deal of confusion and that is TPP…it is one specific trade deal that is being negotiated. It is separate from TPA. Congress has not voted on TPP, and there’s a great deal of concern about TPP.

Please go and read the rest of what Ed Morrissey has to say at HotAir.

Scott Walker has also endorsed Fast Track:

HALPERIN: Big trade vote in the House tomorrow. You support free trade, you support giving the president fast track authority. You don’t usually agree with him, why are you two in agreement on this?

WALKER: In the larger context it’s important to have free and fair and open trade. To me, if we are in an level playing field, our American workers can compete with anyone in the world and if we don’t vote on this path we’re going to be at a competitive disadvantage. And so I think it just makes sense. And I’m hopeful it goes forward.

HALPERIN: So House Republicans who are undecided should vote yes?

WALKER: Yeah. I think in the end — I mean one of the things that are important to remember now is that Republicans control the House, Republicans control the Senate. If this president were to give them a bad deal they should hold him accountable and vote it down. They have every right to do that under the proposal.