By: Terresa Monroe-Hamilton
In case anyone missed it, the worst case scenario – a trifecta from hell – just occurred. Yemen has fallen to the rebels; the King of Saudi Arabia just passed away and Iran now has the capability to drop nuclear missiles in our laps. The shadow of crisis hasn’t passed… it’s engulfed us in its stormy, dark depths.
On Tuesday, as Obama bloviated on about how, “The shadow of crisis has passed and the state of the Union is strong,” Iran was testing their new toys and Yemen was coming apart at the seams. You remember Yemen… that success story that Obama touted last fall, just like Biden clucked on about Iraq. The shining example for all the world to see on how Obama’s fight against terrorism was working. Except, as with every other lie Obama has put forth on the foreign policy front, it has failed. Now we are evacuating the embassy in Yemen – in fact, during Obama’s speech, we had three US Naval warships off the coast of Yemen ready to evacuate the embassy. Think about that. Just like Libya, another embassy is being emptied. At least this time, no dead American bodies are being left in its wake.
The Yemeni government fell to the Houthis, who are big on death to America and Israel just like all of these murderous Jihadists are. Tens of thousands are in the streets protesting and chaos reigns. The really fantastic part of all this is that they are Shiite and backed by Iran, with whom Obama has been spooning ever since he got into office. Why wouldn’t he, when he’s got an Iranian Valerie Jarrett calling the shots? Yemen is home to the most vicious sect of al Qaeda on the planet – al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP). These are the same Jihadists who were linked to the Paris attacks two weeks ago. With the death of the King of Saudi Arabia and the fall of Yemen – the door to Iran seizing more territory and power has swung wide open and it is a very real possibility. Al Qaeda will have a field day as well.
And it gets worse. ISIS is now expanding into Yemen and al Qaeda has pledged their allegiance to ISIS. It is widely said that the Houthis and al Qaeda don’t get along, but in the violent furtherance of Islam, I wouldn’t count on that score if I were you.
From Allen West:
And the Obama administration just announced it would send 400 advisors/trainers to Syria. But we’re allowing Iran to pursue its nuclear program, 10,000 centrifuges,– and the Washington Post just gave President Obama three more Pinocchios for his SOTU assertion that Iran’s nuclear program has slowed down. And as you know, Obama threatened to veto congressional action to sanction Iran.
Why should we kinda care? The Yemeni government was pro-American and was aiding in the fight against Islamists within their borders. Now, not only has the Yemeni government been toppled, it has been replaced with the specter of Iranian influence in the vicinity of a chokepoint entering the Red Sea — and not far from Somalia — yet another hot bed of Islamism.
Now, add on top of this hot fudge sundae the fact that King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia just passed away. Yemen is the southernmost country on the Arabian Peninsula where chaos now abounds at a time of a transition of leadership in Saudi Arabia.
Faced with upheaval and self-preservation, the Saudis could very well step up their support of Sunni Islamic terrorists to combat Iran and the Houthis.
Iran is now the big boy on the block and he’s packing heat. With the new Axis of Evil formed between Iran, Russia and China, I would not be surprised — at all — if Iran already has the bomb.
Iran’s latest coup de gras came this week:
Iran has apparently produced an intercontinental ballistic missile whose range far exceeds the distance between Iran and Israel, and between Iran and Europe.
On Wednesday night, Channel 2 showed satellite imagery taken by Israel’s Eros-B satellite that was launched last April. The imagery showed new missile-related sites that Iran recently constructed just outside Tehran. One facility is a missile launch site, capable of sending a rocket into space or of firing an ICBM.
On the launch pad was a new 27-meter long missile, never seen before.
The missile and the launch pad indicate that Iran’s ballistic missile program, which is an integral part of its nuclear weapons program, is moving forward at full throttle. The expanded range of Iran’s ballistic missile program as indicated by the satellite imagery makes clear that its nuclear weapons program is not merely a threat to Israel, or to Israel and Europe. It is a direct threat to the United States as well.
So, tell me again why our President is threatening to veto any new sanctions against Iran? Why our Marxist leaders are insisting that Iran has a right to nuclear power, which in reality is nuclear warfare capability? Are we on the wrong side, suicidal or both? Obama is knowingly releasing the worst of the worst from Gitmo to go back and actively command and assist these terrorists. This isn’t some far off battle that doesn’t affect us. Iran’s missiles can now reach the United States! And it isn’t just them – it’s Russia and China too. They are literally salivating at the thought of taking us down and Obama is helping them. Please give me one shred of evidence he is not aligned with our enemies, given that he is gutting our military at a time when the world is on fire and an Islamic Caliphate is rising, waging global war and conquest. Weakness is sensed by all our enemies around us and it acts like an aphrodisiac in wartime. I might also remind everyone that there is a Russian naval warship docked in Cuba, while our diplomats are over there cuddling with dictators. You are known by who you associate with. You might ask yourself why Obama has such a fondness for Islamo-fascists and dictators.
Syria has basically fallen apart. Assad has a nuclear program and it could easily fall into the hands of ISIS or the Iranians. We all know how brutal and barbaric ISIS is, but try to imagine those monsters with nukes. This development is significant in light of the Iranians’ announcement two weeks ago that they intend to build two new nuclear reactors and the Obama Administration’s insistence that such a clear expansion of the Iranian nuclear program does not constitute a violation of the Joint Plan of Action to “freeze” the program while its ultimate status is being negotiated. Take that along with this:
The P5+1, AKA The U.S., France, Britain, Russia and China plus Germany came up with something even worse. As Reuters and other sources are reporting, not only did they they give the Ayatollahs another 4 months to ‘negotiate’ while the centrifuges spin, but they actually bribed them with a further release of $2.5 billion in frozen funds just to keep the faux negotiations going. So not only does Iran get another 4 months for weapons development, they get the badly needed funds to continue!
If you throw into the mix that Israel took out an Iranian Revolutionary Guard General and some Hezbollah scum to boot, you have the makings of Armageddon. Next, Iran’s parliament has started to draft a law that would allow the country’s nuclear scientists to intensify their uranium enrichment, a step that could complicate ongoing talks with world powers. That’s tit for tat because of threatened sanctions from the US they say. It wouldn’t matter, any excuse will do… Iran would step up enrichment regardless because they are looking to bring the apocalypse on, pure and simple. And Obama, of course, is proclaiming he will steamroll Democrats (that’s right – Democrats) who get in his way and try to impose sanctions on Iran. Democrat Robert Menendez said during a committee hearing: “The more I hear from the Administration and its quotes, the more it sounds like talking points that come straight out of Tehran.” That’s because they do, Bob.
This comes to light as Obama and the White House claim that John Boehner was out of line by inviting Netanyahu to speak before Congress in March without clearing it first. Then the White House lied about a Mossad report and said that Israel had spat in their face. See where this is going? Obama will stand against Israel all the way and do all he can to make sure that Iran finishes becoming a nuclear power and a world threat.
The shadow of crisis is now engulfing the US. If you pray, now is the time. Two years is a long time for Obama to finish destroying us. I keep reflecting on the fact that you don’t see the US mentioned in end times eschatology. I really hope that is an oversight, because the path Obama is taking us down leads right into the arms of our worst enemies.
By: Cliff Kincaid
The pressure to conform to the left-wing homosexual agenda has scored a direct hit on the Fox News Channel. Peter LaBarbera of Americans for Truth discusses the scandal surrounding Bret Baier’s forced withdrawal from a Catholic conference. Jerry Kenney and Cliff Kincaid join Peter LaBarbera to discuss whether Bret Baier’s rights to free speech and religious expression were violated by his corporate bosses. Can a legal case be brought against Fox News?
By: Trevor Loudon
Writing on the People’s World website, Bachtell explains that much of the left wants to abandon the Democratic Party (as much of the “right” wants to abandon the GOP) to form a radical third party.
In an article entitled A radical third party? I agree! Bachtell explains:
Certainly, there’s widespread disillusionment with both the Democratic and Republican parties. That’s reflected in the latest Pew Research poll: 38 percent of voters describe themselves as independent, 32 percent as Democrats, and 25 percent as Republicans. In 1991, the three were approximately equal.
While acknowledging that both major parties are heavily influenced by Wall Street, Bachtell sees a big difference:
However, it’s not enough to make sweeping generalizations about the Democratic and Republican parties. It’s true both parties are dominated by Wall Street interests, but it’s also necessary to see how each party differs, particularly their social bases and how this affects their policies.
While the Republican Party is led by the most reactionary sections of Wall Street capital including the energy extractive sector and military industrial complex, it also consists of extreme right-wing elements including the Tea Party, white supremacists, social conservatives, right-wing evangelicals, climate deniers, anti-reproductive rights groups, etc.
Meanwhile the Democratic Party is also home to labor, African Americans, Latinos, other communities of color, women, most union members, young people, and a wide range of social and democratic movements. These constituencies exert influence on party leadership and hold positions at all levels.
Therefore, it makes sense, according to Bachtell, for the Communist Party to stick with the Democrats until a viable third party is feasible. To Bachtell, progress towards socialism is possible only after the “right” is soundly defeated.
The Communist Party’s tactics for political independence rest on several interrelated elements. First, they occur within the constraints of the two-party system. We don’t operate in a parliamentary system which allows proportional voting. Instead, winner takes all, and during the general election it usually comes down to voting for one of two candidates most likely to win.
That means candidates are backed by coalitions. Under these circumstances voting based on purity of positions is not a viable tactic. Coalition forces may disagree with a candidate on one or another issue, but find they must support candidates for strategic reasons – to advance issues and create a more favorable terrain of struggle.
Our tactics also occur within the framework of our strategic policy of building a broad coalition to defeat the extreme right, which we see as the main danger to democracy and social progress, embodied within today’s Republican Party. There are voting constituencies that presently support the GOP that have to be won over. Such an approach sees the need to actively challenge right-wing and GOP ideas that influence sections of the people, especially working-class whites, for example, through hate talk radio. This includes racism and intolerance which are key issues dividing the working class.
We see this as one of the stages in the long struggle for advanced democracy and socialism. Without decisively defeating the most reactionary sections of monopoly capital, disintegrating Republican Party support at every level, it’s hard to see winning more radical and advanced programs and policies and waging a fight against the monopoly class as a whole.
We envision a prolonged process toward political independence, with many turns, advances and defeats, utilizing many forms, resulting in a radical third party based in labor, working-class neighborhoods, communities of color, and democratic movements. Such a coalition third party must extend its reach beyond urban areas, to suburbs, exurbs, rural areas, and in “red” states and congressional districts.
Until that glorious day arrives, the Communist Party will continue to “utilize” the Democrats:
First, we are part of building the broadest anti-ultra right alliance possible, uniting the widest array of class (including a section of monopoly), social and democratic forces. This necessarily means working with the Democratic Party. This differentiates us from those left groups who underestimate the right danger and overestimate the readiness of key class and social forces to bolt the Democratic Party.
Second, our objective is not to build the Democratic Party. At this stage we are about building the broad people’s movement led by labor that utilizes the vehicle of the Democratic Party to advance its agenda. We are about building the movements around the issues roiling wide sections of people that can help shape election contours and debates.
The Communist Party often upsets less mature Marxist groups because of their refusal to abandon the Democratic Party, despite not always getting every item on their agenda immediately.
As an experienced Communist, John Bachtell understands that in spite of difficulties and disappointments, the Communist Party agenda is far better served by infiltrating the Democrats than by marching in the streets yelling revolutionary slogans.
The Communist Party and their only marginally less radical Democratic Socialists of America allies can point to real achievements under their “friend” Barack Obama. Obamacare, illegal immigrant “amnesty,” the NEW START Treaty with Russia, negotiations with Iran, military budget cuts and recognition of communist Cuba, are all Communist Party policies, implemented through the Democratic Party.
Bachtell understands that to prematurely break with with the Democrats, on some Quixotic adventure of forming a new leftist third party, would almost certainly hand the next few elections to the GOP. He fears that a revitalized GOP, led by Ted Cruz, or some similar figure, would roll back most, or all of the Communist Party’s hard fought gains.
If US Constitutionalist conservatives and Tea Party activists can show similar political discipline and maturity, they will abandon plans for a suicidal third party agenda – for now. Instead they will work through the GOP, as the Communists have through the Democrats. Learn from the opposition. Utilize the GOP machinery and voting base to build a big Constitutionalist base inside the GOP. Build your strength, do as the Communists have done, primary any vulnerable GOP candidates who will not support your Constitutionalist agenda.
The Communists did that to Senator Joe Lieberman from Connecticut. Now, virtually no senior Democrats will buck the Communist line. They know the price.
So, the Tea Party and their allies need to take back the GOP for Constitutionalism and ensure that someone of the caliber of Ted Cruz or Scott Walker is the GOP Presidential nominee in 2016.
If that happens, Americans can have a second “Reagan Revolution” even better than the first. If it doesn’t, the Communist Party will have theirs.
If Constitutionalists fail and Jeb Bush, or some similar milksop becomes the GOP nominee, they should gather all their forces, leave the GOP en masse and run against him as a third party. At that point, Constitutionalists have nothing left to lose. They should also make it very clear to the GOP hierarchy and major donors that a third party will inevitably follow any further “dirty tricks,” or other attempts to frustrate the will of the people.
Less than a thousand hardcore Communist Party activists and their few thousand Democratic Socialists of America allies effectively dictate Democratic Party policy.
If the much larger Constitutionalist/Tea Party movement can learn from their opponent’s tactics and maturity, they can have a real shot at restoring the Republic.
The battle for America is not between the Democrats and the Republicans. It is between the Communists and the Constitutionalists. The Constitutionalists must better understand their opposition and borrow some of their tactics, if they want a chance of victory.
Trevor Loudon is an author, activist, and political researcher from Christchurch New Zealand.
He is best known for exposing the ties between a young Barack Obama and Hawaiian Communist Party member Frank Marshall Davis, as well as exposing the communist background of former Obama “Green Jobs Czar” Van Jones. Loudon’s latest book, The Enemies Within: Communists, Socialists and Progressives in the U.S. Congress, is designed to expose, the comprehensive communist, socialist and extreme progressive infiltration of the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate.
The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match-up.
I came from the United States of America to stand for freedom, with all free people, against the forces of oppression and darkness which you are representing. … You are fighting for the most radically intolerant and hateful ideology on the planet. … You are already subjugated! You are already their useful idiots. You are already their tools. – Robert Spencer, speaking to a Left wing audience in Europe, June 2, 2011.
Islam isn’t in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant. The Koran… should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on Earth. – CAIR Co-Founder Omar Ahmad
The ideological descendents of the communist/progressive Left that spent its capital hoping the West would lose the Cold War to the Soviet Union are today’s leftist core. Based on their hatred for the United States, the Left has forged a symbiotic relationship with radical Islam, whose hatred for America equals theirs. Both make it clear that they consider Western civilization evil and unworthy of preservation. – Ben R. Furman, Former FBI Counterterrorism Chief
This week’s winning essay, The Noisy Room’s – An American Intifada – Communists and Radical Islamists Join Forces, is a scintillating piece that concerns something only the most blind refuse to see, the alliance between the Red and the Green, between the radical Left and Islam. Here’s a slice:
Trevor Loudon wrote an article that each and every one of us should read and take note of: Intifada USA? American Radicals Build Ties to “Palestinian” Revolutionaries. I agree completely with Trevor when he says that 2015 could usher in chaos, unrest and violence as we have not seen in our lifetime. The Communists are now joining hands in America with the Radical Islamists, forming an American Intifada – an uprising, resistance, revolt. They are using racism as the building blocks and their hate for America as the glue to forward massive havoc and violence in our streets.
The riots in Ferguson and New York were just the warm up act for these thugs. They are looking to create what they think is an American Spring, which will push every radical and Communist ideal there is out there. It will scream racism, go after the police and alphabet agencies, cry social and environmental injustice, push demands for Islamic acceptance and Shariah law – and in the mix will be the ever-present Jew-hatred which is the kindling for their hatred. In this twisted case, the enemy of my enemy is my ally. For the short term anyway.
Taking the lead are primarily Black and Latino revolutionaries who claim to represent the movements for “black lives” and racial justice, who took a jaunt to Palestine to show solidarity against – you guessed it – Israel. Meet the Dream Defenders Palestine Delegation:
Representatives at the forefront of the movements for Black lives and racial justice took a historic trip to Palestine in early January to connect with activists living under Israeli occupation.
Black journalists, artists and organizers representing Ferguson, Black Lives Matter, Black Youth Project 100 (BYP100) and more have joined the Dream Defenders for a 10-day trip to the occupied Palestinian Territories and Israel.
The trip comes after a year of highly-publicized repression in Ferguson, the Gaza Strip and West Bank, including East Jerusalem, as well as solidarity between these places.
Ahmad Abuznaid, Dream Defenders’ legal and policy director and a co-organizer of the delegation, said that the goal of the trip was to make connections.
“The goals were primarily to allow for the group members to experience and see first-hand the occupation, ethnic cleansing and brutality Israel has levied against Palestinians, but also to build real relationships with those on the ground leading the fight for liberation,” wrote Abuznaid.
“In the spirit of Malcolm X, Angela Davis, Stokely Carmichael and many others, we thought the connections between the African American leadership of the movement in the U.S. and those on the ground in Palestine needed to be reestablished and fortified.”
Abuznaid said the trip represented a chance to bring the power of Black organizing to Palestine.
“As a Palestinian who has learned a great deal about struggle, movement, militancy and liberation from African Americans in the U.S., I dreamt of the day where I could bring that power back to my people in Palestine. This trip is a part of that process.”
For Steven Pargett, communications director for Dream Defenders, visiting the Dheisheh Refugee Camp outside of Bethlehem made these connections clearer: “A camp doesn’t have to have a fence with barbed wire all around it in order to be a place where displaced people are struggling to survive.”
Pargett said that Black people in the United States are also displaced refugees.
“Our refugee camps are lower income communities and project buildings all around the country that many would not be living in had we not been taken into slavery generations ago. Rather than having the Israeli Defense occupation in our hoods, we have the occupation of police officers who often prove to have little regard for our lives, being that they are not from these communities,” Pargett wrote.
Hip-hop was a unifying force for the delegation, Pargett said, commenting that Palestinians have been inspired by hip-hop in the U.S. and use it as a tool to amplify their own voices.
St. Louis-based rapper and activist Tef Poe said his experience in the camps connecting through hip-hop was the best day of his life.
“A refugee camp with a bunch of people fighting for their lives and using hip hop to lift their spirits and spark the minds of the children and break down gender barriers between young girls and boys,” Tef posted to Facebook. “I spent a day with these ppl .. Most amazing day of my life. Thanks be to the Most, the struggle is beautiful.”
This trip is another chapter in the recent history of Black-Palestinian solidarity. In November, a group of 10 Palestinian student activists visited Ferguson and St. Louis, meeting with people organizing in the streets.
A month later, upon their return, the students hosted a series of events at their university in the West Bank to raise awareness with the Black struggle and stand in solidarity. Dream Defenders unanimously passed a resolution to support the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement in this interval.
Moving forward, delegates expressed a desire for Black and American action in support of Palestine.
“I believe the Black Lives Matter movement can benefit greatly by learning about struggles outside of the U.S., but particularly the Palestinian struggle,” said Patrisse Cullors. “I want this trip to be an example for how Black folks and Arab communities can be in better solidarity with one another.”
Cherrell Brown sees joint action as a way to global freedom.
“I want us to take back things we can do in the now, as Americans, to raise awareness and action around Palestinian liberation. I want us to reimagine what society could and will look like when we’ve dismantled this white-supremacist patriarchal and capitalist society. I want us to do it together. I want to bring back these conversations and stories in hopes that it will help add to this global struggle to get free.”
The full list of delegates includes five Dream Defenders (Phillip Agnew, Ciara Taylor, Steven Pargett, Sherika Shaw, Ahmad Abuznaid), Tef Poe and Tara Thompson (Ferguson/Hands Up United), journalist Marc Lamont Hill, Cherrell Brown and Carmen Perez (Justice League NYC), Charlene Carruthers (Black Youth Project), poet and artist Aja Monet, Patrisse Cullors (Black Lives Matter), and Maytha Alhassen, a USC PhD student. Catch up with the delegation and follow their last few days using #DDPalestine on Twitter and Instagram.
Gee, that’s a who’s who of racists, social justice agitators and Communists. Just look how chummy and united they have all become. I know you will be really, really shocked to learn that the Tides Foundation is funding this. And who is behind the Tides Foundation? Why, that old spider George Soros who hates Jews, America and freedom in general. You know, the guy who gave $33 million to the activists who took part in Ferguson and other venues of violence.
This is all part of a movement that has been gathering steam for a while now and it is thoroughly anti-Israel. Guess who is in the thick of it? Dr. Marc Lamont Hill of HuffPost Live, BET News and CNN. Watch it Marc, your antisemitism is showing and badly. Our comrade Hill also spouted revolutionary rhetoric to promote the Dream Defenders. Ferguson, Eric Garner and #BlackLivesMatter protests have become the calling card for the new face of the Occupy Movement. You are witnessing the rise of the Islamo-Communist Axis in America.
More at the link.
In our non-Council category, the winner was Victor Davis Hanson – Muslims And Islamists submitted by Joshuapundit. I’m a huge fan of VDH, even when I disagree with him. In this particular case, I think he is spot on and all I’ll say is that what he wrote here deserves your utmost attention.
Here are this week’s full results:
- *First place with 3 1/3 votes! – The Noisy Room – An American Intifada – Communists and Radical Islamists Join Forces
- Second place with 2 2/3 votes – Joshuapundit – The ‘Selma’ Controversy And What It Says About Race In America
- Third place with 1 2/3 votes – Ask Marion – American Sniper… Hollywood and Sharpton
- Fourth place *t* with 1 1/3 votes – Bookworm Room – Mt. Holyoke, The Vagina Monologues, and why “The Coming College Decline” is a good thing
- Fourth place *t* with 1 1/3 votes – The Razor – Consensual Incest Puts Progressives on Slippery Slope
- Fifth place with 1 vote – The Right Planet – The Marxist Dialectic – From Lenin to Obama
- Sixth place *t* with 2/3 vote – Simply Jews – Deborah Maccoby to Jews of Europe: denounce Israel and live happily thereafter
- Sixth place *t* with 2/3 vote – Nice Deb – The Obama Regime, CAIR, and the Doctrine of Taqiyya
- Seventh place with 1/3 vote – VA Right! – Hanover Photo-gate Deepens – New Photo Casts Doubt on Statement to Mechanicsville Local
- *First place with 2 votes! – Victor Davis Hanson – Muslims And Islamists submitted by Joshuapundit
- Second place *t* with 1 1/3 votes – Marine Le Pen – To Call This Threat By Its Name submitted by The Razor
- Second place *t* with 1 1/3 votes – Global Guerillas – Saudi Arabia Plunges into an Abyss submitted by The Glittering Eye
- Second place *t* with 1 1/3 votes – Jerome Corsi/WND – Admirals, generals, intel: Benghazi inquest compromised, ‘I think Gowdy has been warned away or threatened’ submitted by Ask Marion
- Second place *t* with 1 1/3 votes – Sultan Knish – The Importance Of Blasphemy submitted by The Independent Sentinel
- Third place *t* with 1 vote – Michelle Malkin – Attack Of The Open-Borders Mau-Mau-ers submitted by The Noisy Room
- Third place *t* with 1 vote – Kevin D. Williamson/NRO – The FOX News Obsession submitted by Nice Deb
- Fourth place *t* with 2/3 votes – The Passing Parade – The More Things Change, The More They Stay The Same submitted by Simply Jews
- Fourth place *t* with 2/3 votes – American Thinker – Eric Cantor Lectures On How to Win Elections? submitted by VA Right!
- Fourth place *t* with 2/3 votes – Tom Rogan/NRO – The New Islamic State: Boko Haram submitted by GrEaT sAtAn”S gIrLfRiEnD
- Fifth place *t* with 1/3 vote – Mike McDaniel/The Truth About Guns-It Happened Before, It Will Happen Again submitted by Bookworm Room
- Fifth place *t* with 1/3 vote – The New American – Obama and UN Created Terror State in Libya submitted by The Right Planet
- Fifth place *t* with 1/3 vote – Volokh Conspiracy – Over 80 percent of Americans support “mandatory labels on foods containing DNA” submitted by Rhymes with Right
- Fifth place *t* with 1/3 vote – Eli Lake – Why Obama Can’t Say ‘Radical Islam’ submitted by The Watcher
- Fifth place *t* with 1/3 vote – The Other McCain – Rapists Rape and Rape Again submitted by The Watcher
See you next week!
Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum and every Tuesday morning, when we reveal the weeks’ nominees for Weasel of the Week!
And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council and the results are posted on Friday morning.
It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere and you won’t want to miss it… or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.
Hat Tip: BB
By James Simpson | Watchdog Arena
Following his State of the Union addresses, former President Ronald Reagan was routinely chided by the national press regarding his “rosy scenarios” projected for the economy and the federal budget. But at that time, our nation was experiencing an unprecedented economic boom and most of Reagan’s “rosy scenarios” were being realized. In contrast, Tuesday night, President Obama laid out a “rosy scenario” for the economy that was built on a bed of flagrant inaccuracies.
One cannot chalk this up to ignorance. Evidence of economic malaise is everywhere. The labor force participation rate is at its lowest since 1978. The unemployment rate has declined at least in part because so many people have given up looking for work that they are no longer counted in official unemployment statistics. Many more have been forced into part-time positions as employers seek to avoid heavy Obamacare costs.
Furthermore, marginal improvements in the economy have been fueled by the domestic oil boom, which Obama has fought tooth and nail. But food stamp utilization is perhaps the most blatant illustration of our still-sclerotic economy.
Now called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program(“SNAP”), in 2014, fully 46.5 million Americans were enrolled at a cost of $73.8 billion. For each of President Obama’s six full years in office, food stamp use has been higher than at any time in history—almost double its highest previous rates—and more people have been added to the rolls than during any other presidency.
Food stamp usage declined last year for the first time since Obama was elected, a meager 2 percent. The number of people on food stamps, however, remains over 18 million higher than during President Bush’s highest year, and 19.5 million higher than the previous record set in 1993. (See chart below).
These indicators are not the sign of an economic recovery; but rather an indication that the American economy has moved into a new normal—one of chronically high unemployment and welfare utilization.
Everything in Obama’s SOTU address promised more of the same. Obama said it was time to “turn the page.” As Dave Greenfield at Front Page Magazine quipped, “When everything on the last page looks so bad, then it’s time to turn the page…”
Despite his penchant for prevarication, Obama has his disciples. Like Obama, outgoing Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, who has set his sights on higher office, has built his reputation on fiction. When former Republican Gov. Bob Ehrlich left office in 2006, Maryland’s state budget stood at $25.8 billion. O’Malley claims he cut the budget to the bone, but in his eight years in office, it grew to $37.3 billion, an increase of 45 percent.
While claiming to champion “green” environmental policies, O’Malley repeatedly raided trust funds earmarked for Chesapeake Bay cleanup to the tune of at least $135 million since 2009. He doubled Maryland’s infamous “flush tax” to refill the fund, raided it again, and passed the uniformly unpopular “rain tax.” He also raided the highway trust fund repeatedly to the tune of $868 million between 2009 and 2011 alone, despite receiving $771 million in stimulus funds for infrastructure projects. When this wasn’t enough, he repaid trust funds by issuing new bonds. Maryland’s current structural budget deficit stands at $1.2 billion.
Despite the fact that Maryland floats on federal dollars more than any other state, between 2004 and 2012, Maryland’s food stamp utilization grew 162 percent– a rate exceeded by only three other states (See FGA SNAP document). Over 13 percent of Maryland’s population is currently using food stamps. In 2010, the depth of the recession, only 9.7 percent of Marylanders used food stamps. Most of this can likely be credited to Governor O’Malley’s sanctuary state policies.
Larry Hogan is the newly-elected governor of Maryland, only the third Republican elected to that position since 1960. Hogan has identified the cost of O’Malley policies. “Under O’Malley and [Lt. Gov. Anthony] Brown, Maryland has lost 8,000 businesses and unemployment has nearly doubled,” he said. “In fact, 26 percent of our manufacturing base, and with it 25,000 jobs, has disappeared. Today, Maryland is dead last in the nation in manufacturing.” In his inaugural address delivered on Wednesday, Hogan said, “Together, let’s make Maryland a place that we can all be proud of again.” He has his work cut out for him.
This article was written by contributors of Watchdog Arena, Franklin Center’s network of writers, bloggers, and citizen journalists.