05/22/15
Hillary Clinton / Elizabeth Warren

The Council Has Spoken!! Our Watcher’s Council Results – 05/22/15

The Watcher’s Council


Obama saves the Republic…


Anti-Stephanopoulos Artwork Posted Near ABC News Headquarters in Manhattan

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

I believe there are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. – James Madison

We the people are the rightful masters of both Congress and the courts, not to overthrow the Constitution but to overthrow the men who pervert the Constitution. – Abraham Lincoln

Those who have long enjoyed such privileges as we enjoy forget in time that men have died to win them. – Franklin D. Roosevelt

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This week’s winning essay, Bookworm Room’sA phenomenal talk about the Constitution and how to make it meaningful to America’s young people, is a fascinating account of a presentation she attended on the Constitution, one she feels would be of great value to young citizens who are being indoctrinated by public education rather that educated. Here’s a slice:

I had the great pleasure today of attending a phenomenal talk by Prof. David Bobb, president of the Bill of Rights Institute. BRI uses original source documents to help teachers ans students understand America’s founding document and to see how it’s still relevant today. Its ultimate goal is to bring to an end our nation’s intellectual disengagement from the Constitution and to lead young people to “think the vote,” which is mindful, informed approach to elections, rather than to “rock the vote,” a mindless, drone-like approach to important issues that profoundly affect America’s young people.

Prof. Bobb could not be a better spokesman for his organization. To begin with, his bio is impressive:

David earned his Ph.D. in political science from Boston College, where he was the recipient of fellowships from the Pew, Earhart, and Bradley Foundation, as well as the Intercollegiate Studies Institute.

[snip]

David joined the Bill of Rights Institute in December 2013. Previously he was the founding director of two national centers for Hillsdale College, the Washington, D.C.-based Allan P. Kirby, Jr. Center for Constitutional Studies and Citizenship, and the Hoogland Center for Teacher Excellence, a civic education program. From 2001 to 2013 he also was lecturer in politics at Hillsdale College, where he taught courses in American politics and public policy.

David is the author of Humility: An Unlikely Biography of America’s Greatest Virtue (Thomas Nelson, 2013) and a contributing editor to The U.S. Constitution: A Reader (Hillsdale College Press, 2012). He has written articles and reviews for the Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, Washington Times, Boston Herald, and the Claremont Review of Books, among other publications. He has spoken widely to audiences in twenty-five states on topics including education reform, civic engagement, and the American Constitution.

In other words, Prof. Bobb knows his stuff and he is a natural communicator and teacher. His speaking style, something that always matters to me, is the essence of clarity. No fudging, no obfuscation, no blathering. Frankly, it was a challenge to take notes, because Prof. Bobb had no spare words or sentences in his speech. Every sentence was interesting and to the point. Since I don’t do shorthand, of necessity I had to condense some ideas and I know that I missed others. This means that, to the extent there are any errors in this post, they are definitely mine, not Prof. Bobb’s. With that warning, here goes:

If I were a more detail-oriented person, I would undoubtedly have noticed long ago that, on our one dollar bill, under the pyramid, there is a Latin inscription stating “novus ordo seclorum.“

And if I were a more curious person, I would have gone online to translate that phrase. For those who, like me, don’t remember their Latin and or who aren’t too curious about our dollar bill, the phrase means “New Order Of The Ages.” It is the Founders’ announcement to the world and to posterity that they were embarking upon a grand governmental experiment, one that had never been tried before. In the Federalist papers, Alexander Hamilton noted that Americans were about to take a step no other people had taken before:

” It has been frequently remarked that it seems to have been reserved to the people of this country, by their conduct and example, to decide the important question, whether societies of men are really capable or not of establishing good government from reflection and choice, or whether they are forever destined to depend for their political constitutions on accident and force.”

Back in the day, then, the Founders, with a great deal of trepidation, were about to embark upon a planned government, one that would vest the maximum amount of power in the people and that, at the governmental level, would guard against the possibility of tyranny. After all, only a few years before, they had declared themselves free to part ways with England because, in their eyes, George III had become a tyrant by taking upon himself the powers of the executive, the legislature, and the judiciary. They understood that human frailty is such that no one person should ever hold that much power over others.

The unique aspect of the new Constitution was the notion — the product of one hundred years of Enlightenment thinking (powered by an increasingly humanist Christianity) — that each person comes into the world with certain rights vested in him (or her). These are not gifts from the government that the government can then take a way. Instead, when a government infringes on these inherent rights, it’s the people who have the power to destroy the government and initiate a better one — and our Constitution was intended to define that better government.

The most exceptional thing about the Constitution — which is a contract between government and the American people — is the notion of separation of powers. England, of course, led the way with that idea, wresting from the King certain powers reserved for Parliament. This was a notion that was first institutionalized in the Magna Carta; was then tested under Charles I (who lost his head for picking “King power,” rather than “People power” when asked the question “who’s in charge here?”); and was re-tested under George III, who kept his head but lost America because he too thought that he could vest in himself the full powers of government.

The Articles of Confederation, the governing document that preceded the Constitution, did not have a tripartite approach to power. It created an executive office, but had no judiciary or legislature and, significantly, it did not give the executive office the power to tax. The office had, on the one hand, too much power and, on the other hand, no way to put all that power into effect. The Constitution would do better.

At this point in his talk, in light of the upcoming 2016 election, Prof. Bobb narrowed his his focus to the executive office. He noted that, although Alexander Hamilton and James Madison, the intellectual powerhouses behind the Constitution, devoutly believed in diffuse power as a bulwark against tyranny, they also understood that, to the extent they vested power in a specific institution, that power had to be meaningful. To that end, they didn’t try to create a weak executive by splitting that power among different individuals or groups.

It was Hamilton who envisioned as president an individual who, while hedged about with constitutional safeguards, could act with “decision, activity, secrecy, and dispatch.” After all, in times of national emergency, one can’t have a committee laboriously working its way to a tame and untimely bureaucratic response.

While the president could be active, decisive, and secretive, he still had to have limitations — and control over these limitations had to be placed in an organization equally invested in protecting and advancing its power. Or, as James Madison said, “Ambition must be made to counteract ambition.” The Constitution decided that three entities, each jealously protecting its power, would ensure that no single part of that trio would be able to aggregate too much power, the inevitable path to tyranny.

More at the link.

In our non-Council category, the winner was The Baron at Gates of Vienna with a piece that resonates a great deal right now, Playing Nice submitted by Joshuapundit.

The Baron looks at western society’s surprising tendency to whitewash Islamist terrorism, deliberately distancing it from its obvious religious inspiration and even blaming the victims on many occasions for the ensuing atrocities. I think he’s on to something here when he talks about a certain very prevalent mindset as the cause of this dysfunction.

Well, that, and the billions of petro dollars from certain countries in the Middle East to universities, to various think tanks and lobbyists registered and unregistered, and especially to politicians on both sides of the aisle.

Do read it.

Here are this week’s full results. Only Ask Marion and The Right Planet were unable to vote this week, but neither was subject to the usual 2/3 vote penalty for not voting:

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum and every Tuesday morning, when we reveal the week’s 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.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

05/21/15
Allen West

“Commencing” Climate Change – POTUS Warns Coast Gards Grads At Commencement

05/21/15
Evan Sayet

To My Friends in Phoenix, Chicago, Boston, and New York: Go and See Conservative Comedian Evan Sayet

By: Trevor Loudon
New Zeal

Please, please, please!!! Take some time out of your busy schedule to go and see conservative comedian Evan Sayet during his upcoming cross-country tour.

I’ve dined with this guy. He’s both an intelligent principled ex-liberal turned conservative and a hilarious story-teller.

He is the author of the epic viral tweet, after two Islamic terrorist were shot dead at Pam Geller’s art exhibition in Garland, Texas recently:

“My favourite drawings at the Muhammad cartoon festival in Texas were the two chalk outlines out front.”

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Evan will be appearing in PHOENIX (May 27), CHICAGO (June 3), BOSTON (June 10) and NEW YORK (June 14) (MORE TBA).

The Phoenix gig will be at the Laugh Factory in Scottsdale, 7000 E. Shea Blvd., Scottsdale, AZ 85254. Admission is only $20:

Evan Sayet, America’s leading conservative political comedian, is taking his show on the road, performing in comedy clubs from coast to coast. These shows, however, are more than just “funny,” they are, important conservative events.

Evan’s humor is so right-on and so insightful that he’s one of the most in-demand speakers at some of the nation’s most important conservative political events including David Horowitz’s Restoration Weekend, CPAC’s annual Reagan dinner, the California state convention, Americans for Prosperity’s Right Online conference, and so many more. Now YOU can see him as he takes his one-man show to a club near you!

05/20/15
Bill de Blasio

De Blasio’s “Contract for Communism”

By: Terresa Monroe-Hamilton

Red Bill de Blasio just unveiled a 13-point national “Progressive Agenda” that is being touted as the liberal “Contract with America.” It more closely resembles a “Contract for Communism.”

And a majority of Democrats wholeheartedly approve this as the basis for the “Progressive Agenda” – the bedrock for their primary economic policies and the running platform for their anointed 2016 presidential candidate. The mask is coming off… they are going full bore Marxist/Communist and are proud of it. Members of Congress are praising de Blasio for uniting Progressives.

Rev. Al Sharpton stated that the shared goals of Progressives are more important than each individual leader’s specific opinions – how very communist of the Reverend:

“We don’t agree on everything but we agree that we have to deal with income inequality and wages and how we get there,” he said. “We can’t debate that America has to be fair for everybody. We can’t debate that the billionaires are playing games with us and treating us like hamsters on a treadmill rather than people that are focused on the goal line. We will change the debate starting today.”

Comrade Sharpton waxes poetic for the communist agenda. Is anyone surprised that the weasel who is vocally advocating for the nationalization of our police forces stands on a communist perch worthy of Lenin?

De Blasio comparing this to the Republican Party’s 1994 “Contract with America” only holds up if you consider it the very antithesis to such a political platform. But it certainly does lay bare their wealth redistribution and class realignment goals.

Aaron Klein at WND has documented that most of the 13 points in de Blasio’s “Progressive Agenda” can also be found in the manifestos and literature of the Communist Party USA and the Socialist Party USA:

Here is a comparison of the Agenda’s plan with literature from the manifestos and writings of the Community Party USA, or CPUSA, and the Socialist Party USA, or SPUSA.

Progressive Agenda: “Raise the federal minimum wage, so that it reaches $15/hour, while indexing it to inflation.”

SPUSA: “We call for a minimum wage of $15 per hour, indexed to the cost of living.”

CPUSA: Calls for “struggles for peace, equality for the racially and nationally oppressed, equality for women job creation programs, increased minimum wage. … Even with ultra-right control of the Federal government, peoples legislative victories, such as increasing the minimum wage, can be won on an issue-by-issue basis locally, statewide, and even nationally.”

Progressive Agenda: “Reform the National Labor Relations Act, to enhance workers’ right to organize and rebuild the middle class.”

SPUSA: “The Socialist Party stands for the right of all workers to organize, for worker control of industry through the democratic organization of the workplace.”

CPUSA: “One of the most crucial ways of increasing the strength and unity of the working class as a whole is organizing the unorganized. Working-class unity depends on uniting all the diverse sectors of the multiracial, multinational working class in the U.S. … Speeding up the organization of unorganized workers is one of the most important challenges to labor and all progressive forces.”

Progressive Agenda: “Pass comprehensive immigration reform to grow the economy and protect against exploitation of low-wage workers.”

SPUSA: “We defend the rights of all immigrants to education, health care, and full civil and legal rights and call for an unconditional amnesty program for all undocumented people. We oppose the imposition of any fees on those receiving amnesty. We call for full citizenship rights upon demonstrating residency for six months.”

CPUSA: Declares the “struggle for immigrant rights is a key component of the struggle for working class unity in our country today.”

Progressive Agenda: Pass national paid sick leave. Pass national paid family leave.

CPUSA: In October 2014, hails that “women are fighting back to defend their jobs and their families against candidates who want to destroy women’s reproductive rights, health care, family leave and paid sick days. Women’s voices and votes can make the difference in this election in the U.S. Senate and House, for Governors and State Legislatures, and in the movement going forward for full equality.”

Progressive Agenda: “Make Pre-K, after-school programs and childcare universal.”

SPUSA: “We support public child care starting from infancy, and public education starting at age three, with caregivers and teachers of young children receiving training, wages, and benefits comparable to that of teachers at every other level of the educational system.”

Progressive Agenda: “Earned Income Tax Credit.” “Implement the ‘Buffett Rule’ so millionaires pay their fair share.”

SPUSA: “We call for a steeply graduated income tax and a steeply graduated estate tax. …”

CPUSA: “No taxes for workers and low and middle income people; progressive taxation of the wealthy and private corporations. …”

Eerily similar, huh? Getting a little hot in our comrade’s kitchen – in fact, hot damn!

De Blasio considers Obama “too conservative” to implement a progressive economic vision and “too afraid to take the bold kind of action that President Roosevelt took” during the Great Depression. It is widely rumored that de Blasio is considering running for president in 2016. At the very least, his agenda for New York is very clear. No way would I live in New York these days – did you know 46% of the population there lives in poverty? Of course, de Blasio blames it all on the Bloomberg administration. Bloomberg deserves a lot of blame, but if he pulled the city into ghettosville, de Blasio is tripling down on it. He wants to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour, just like Seattle. That was disastrous for Seattle by the way. And now LA has decided that they are copying this suicidal move. Looks like both coasts just can’t get enough Marxism going on. Both are racing to see who can go third-world first.

Speaking at the “Progressive Agenda” launch event, de Blasio said “something is changing in America.” Yeah and not for the better. “It’s time to take that energy and crystallize it into an agenda that will make a difference,” he said. “We’ll be calling on leaders and candidates to address these issues, to stiffen their backbones, to be clear and to champion these progressive policies.” It’s an all-you-can-eat Marxist buffet. In attendance were politicians, union leaders and of course, race monger, Al Sharpton. In other words, the who’s who of America’s communists.

The Hill quoted Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., saying de Blasio’s plan “could be the beginning of a revolution.”

Rep. Mark Pocan, D-Wis., commented the mayor’s plan represents “the meat on the bones of a progressive agenda.”

Rep. Yvette Clarke, D-N.Y., said, “The cavalry has arrived.”

Either de Blasio is taking his communist agenda on the election trail, or he is trying to force the Hildebeast even further to the left. But honestly, it’s hard to see how she could go much further left these days.

The Atlantic reported the coalition supporting de Blasio’s plan includes Dan Cantor, executive director of the Working Families Party. Cantor was also a founder of the socialist-oriented New Party. Did you know de Blasio once served as executive director of the New York branch of the New Party? Trevor Loudon has done massive research on Obama, who was also listed in New Party literature as a member. WND did as well.

De Blasio’s plan is based on a plan crafted by a George Soros-connected professor. De Blasio’s “Progressive Agenda” was formed around a 112-page policy report at the liberal Roosevelt Institute titled, “Rewriting the Rules of the American Economy.” The author is Joseph Stiglitz… the Columbia University economist who was an integral part of Occupy Wall Street. De Blasio is a big fan, which should tell you all you need to know. Stiglitz wants more government regulation of the economy.

Stiglitz previously chaired the Commission on Global Financial Issues of Socialists International, the world’s largest socialist organization. He’s also an economic adviser to Obama. His Keynesian economics are pure Marxist pablum.

Gavin Wright, chairman of Stanford’s economics department, summarized Stiglitz’s work:

“Broadly speaking, Joe’s theoretical work has had to do with the shortcomings and imperfections of market economy, not from the standpoint of a thorough-going rejection of the market economy but from the perspective that holds out hope for improvement through government regulation or use of the tax system,” Wright said.

From WND:

Stiglitz was a member of President Bill Clinton’s administration, serving both in Clinton’s cabinet and as chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers.

Stiglitz’s most important contribution during his time in the Clinton administration was helping to define a new economic philosophy called a “third way,” which called for business and government to join hands as “partners,” while recognizing government intervention could not always correct the limitations of markets.

“Third Way” is an ideology first promoted as an alternative to free markets by Mikhail Gorbachev after the collapse of the Soviet Union. The “Third Way” of governing would be neither capitalist nor communist, but something in between.

In his 1998 “State of the Union” address, President Clinton outlined the “Third Way”: “We have moved past the sterile debate between those who say government is the enemy and those who say government is the answer. My fellow Americans, we have found a Third Way.”

The “Third Way” calls for business and government to join hands as “partners.”

Discover the Networks criticized the theory: “In short, Big Business would own the economy (as under capitalism), while Big Government would run it (as under socialism). Corporations would be persuaded to comply with government directives through subsidies, tax breaks, customized legislation, and other special privileges.”

Soros himself has been a vocal proponent of the “Third Way” economic policy.

Stiglitz, meanwhile, also became involved in “global warming” issues, including serving on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, helping to draft a new law for toxic wastes and serving on the boards of numerous environmental groups, such as the Alliance for Climate Protection.

Stiglitz is calling for a “New Global Economic Order” in which the world is “no longer dominated by one ‘superpower.’”

So you see, the communist ideals are endemic to de Blasio and his “Contract with America.”

In closing, here is the Progressive Agenda he is pushing:

Lift the Floor for Working People »

  • Raise the federal minimum wage, so that it reaches $15/hour, while indexing it to inflation.
  • Reform the National Labor Relations Act, to enhance workers’ right to organize and rebuild the middle class.
  • Pass comprehensive immigration reform to grow the economy and protect against exploitation of low-wage workers.
  • Oppose trade deals that hand more power to corporations at the expense of American jobs, workers’ rights, and the environment.
  • Invest in schools, not jails– and give a second chance to those coming home from prison.

Support Working Families »

  • Pass national paid sick leave.
  • Pass national paid family leave.
  • Make Pre-K, after-school programs and childcare universal.
  • Expand the Earned Income Tax Credit and protect and expand Social Security.
  • Allow students to refinance student loan debt to take advantage of lower interest rates, and support debt-free college.

Tax Fairness »

  • Close the carried interest loophole.
  • End tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas.
  • Implement the “Buffett Rule” so millionaires pay their fair share.
  • Close the CEO tax loophole that allows corporations to take advantage of “performance pay” write-offs.

There are many on the right pushing some of this crap too – especially Van Jones‘ ’empty the prisons’ mantra. This is a blueprint for solid communism – just say no to Red Bill de Blasio and his commie policies. His “Contract for Communism” is a road map to tyranny and the fall of the Republic.

05/20/15
George Stephanopoulos

Watcher’s Council Nominations – No Strings Attached Edition

The Watcher’s Council

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Phony, corrupt little meat puppet…

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

Council News:

The Council In Action!!

Our own Tom White at VA Right continues his successful march to become the Guru of Virginia political bloggers with a radio interview May 16th with John Fredericks, the biggest talk show host in the state.

This week, The Pirate’s Cove and Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion earned honorable mention status with some great articles.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title and a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address (mandatory, but of course it won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6 PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out on Wednesday morning.

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have for you this week…

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that! And don’t forget to tune in Friday for the results!