The Markets Were Bifurcated Again

By: Kent Engelke | Capitol Securities

Markets again were bifurcated. The NASDAQ was flat, but the Dow advanced about 0.40% as oil and the industrials — aka the value shares and Boeing –
outperformed on either better than expected earnings or further gains in crude.

Commenting about crude, oil is now at the highest level in about eight weeks as total stock piles tumbled to the lowest levels since January 2016. Inventories at the largest storage point – Cushing – fell to the lowest levels since November 2015.

Overall inventories fell about 2.5x more than expected. At the pace of the last four weeks, inventories will fall to the 5 year average of 400 million barrels in about eight or nine weeks.

US production also declined for the first time since the first week of June.

Commenting about earnings, the industrials are exceeding expectations and there is a nascent trend of funds gravitating from the largest capitalized technology growth stocks to value/industrial shares. Will oil shares be next? Earnings season for the crude producers commence next week and profits are expected to increase by double digits.

Regarding the conclusion of yesterday’s two-day Fed meeting, in my view no new ground was broken. The Committee stated “near term risks to the economic outlook appear roughly balanced,” that they are monitoring inflation developments “closely” and will begin running off their $4.5 trillion balance sheet “relatively soon,” perhaps as soon as September. The Fed also reiterated their intent to increase the overnight rate by December.

Late yesterday another “must own” stock missed estimates. As noted many times, a vast preponderance of monies gravitated to five companies in 2017. These companies are the largest capitalized companies in the world, each at one time up over 30% since the beginning of the year.

I believe Oaktree Capital Group’s chairman Howard Marks placed the valuations of these five companies into the proper perspective stating these values represent at least 30 years of current earnings, thus valuations are not sustainable.

Last night the foreign markets were up. London was up 0.03%, Paris was up 0.12% and Frankfurt down 0.43%. China was up 0.06%, Japan was up 0.15% and Hang Sang was up 0.71%.

The Dow should open quiet. The 10-year is unchanged at 2.29%.


Oil And The Industrials Led The Market

By: Kent Engelke | Capitol Securities

The Dow advanced about 0.4% while the NASDAQ was unchanged as the industrials and oil lifted the value shares. Earnings for several large named industrials exceeded expectations, while profits for some of the mega-capitalized technology names disappointed.

As noted, oil surged 4.6%, the most since November, as Saudi Arabia pledged to reduce exports in August by 1 million barrels a day. Moreover, the political and economic strife is great in Venezuela as its society is on the brink of imploding, threatening its 2 million barrel per day exports. Demand for oil is also at a record according to the IEA. Inventories as measured by the American Petroleum Institute were reported late in the day and fell about 4x more than forecasted.

Treasuries sold off as consumer confidence is surging. The “Present Condition Index” rose to a 16-year high and the gauge of consumer expectations for the next six months also increased. In other words, the consumer is the most optimistic since 2001 and is expecting conditions to improve even more during the next 6 months.

Further discussing consumer sentiment, the “Labor Differential” or the index designed to measure the share of those saying jobs are plentiful minus the share, is expected to widen to 16.1%, the most six August 2001, a bullish sign for employment and potential wage gains.

Will this decade and half high sentiment transcend into the real economy? Will second quarter GDP which is released Friday exceed expectations? Perhaps the Federal Reserve will make some statement about current and expected growth rates at the conclusion of today’s meeting.

Last night the foreign markets were up. London was up 0.36%, Paris was up 0.61% and Frankfurt was up 0.28%. China was up 0.12%, Japan was up 0.48% and Hang Sang was up 0.33%.

The Dow, led by the industrials and oil, should open nominally higher. The 10-year is up 3/32 to yield 2.32%.


SNOPES TAKEN HOSTAGE: Left-wing “fact-checker” reveals it has lost control of its website

Doug Ross @ Journal

At one point in the distant past of the Interwebs, Snopes.com was taken seriously as a leading de-bunker of urban myths.

As the years went by, its founders — a once-married couple named David and Barbara Mikkelson — decided to drift into political commentary. As their site grew, they hired an openly partisan, left-wing blogger named Kim Lacapria.

Lacapria had earlier declared herself “openly left-leaning” and very liberal. She has tarred conservatives as “teahadists” who “fear female agency”.

After joining Snopes, Lacapria quickly found herself and the site embroiled in controversy as her various posts read like Democrat op-eds and not any sort of fact-checking.

The Mikkelsons themselves are an interesting pair. They divorced in 2014, but appear to be engaged in a vicious battle over their assets. One court document accuses David of “raiding the corporate business Bardav bank account for his personal use… [which] he expended upon himself and the prostitutes he hired.”

Well, as you might expect from an organization this well-run…

…Snopes “is now in danger of closing its doors” and has been forced to hold a fundraising campaign (link intentionally omitted).

In the letter David Mikkelson wrote describing the reason for the campaign, he admits that the company has lost control of its own website and says it’s being held “hostage” by a vendor it outsourced various services to.

That’s a big deal. In fact, Mikkelson implies that the vendor could create, alter and delete any site contents it wants to. Thus far, he claims that hasn’t happened.

Snopes.com, which began as a small one-person effort in 1994 and has since become one of the Internet’s oldest and most popular fact-checking sites, is in danger of closing its doors. So, for the first time in our history, we are turning to you, our readership, for help.

Since our inception, we have always been a self-sustaining site that provides a free service to the online world: we’ve had no sponsors, no outside investors or funding, and no source of revenue other than that provided by online advertising. Unfortunately, we have been cut off from our historic source of advertising income.

We had previously contracted with an outside vendor to provide certain services for Snopes.com. That contractual relationship ended earlier this year, but the vendor will not acknowledge the change in contractual status and continues to essentially hold the Snopes.com web site hostage. Although we maintain editorial control (for now), the vendor will not relinquish the site’s hosting to our control, so we cannot modify the site, develop it, or — most crucially — place advertising on it. The vendor continues to insert their own ads and has been withholding the advertising revenue from us.

Our legal team is fighting hard for us, but, having been cut off from all revenue, we are facing the prospect of having no financial means to continue operating the site and paying our staff (not to mention covering our legal fees) in the meanwhile.

As misinformation has increasingly threatened democracies around the world (including our own), Snopes.com has stood in the forefront of fighting for truth and dispelling misinformation online

The fact that Snopes says it has lost control of its site renders its already tenuous hold on the fact-checking business meaningless.

Snopes should be removed from any fact arbitration services from Facebook and Google until it can reclaim control of its site.

Meanwhile, those interested in all of the legal back-and-forth between the parties can grab some popcorn and enjoy.


Comrade Obama Unmasked

By: Cliff Kincaid | America’s Survival

In the time period of 2007-2008, two journalists — Trevor Loudon, a blogger from New Zealand, and America’s Survival President Cliff Kincaid — tried to interest the public and the media in the story of their lifetimes. It was how a first-term largely unknown Senator from Illinois was a covert communist with backing from Russia who was poised to win the presidency of the United States. But the story of Obama’s Marxist revolution — the “fundamental transformation” of the United States — does not end there. Kincaid, Loudon and their co-authors, including a former Intelligence Community insider, also examine Obama’s on-going effort to organize “resistance” on a national and global level to President Donald J. Trump. This important book, available from Amazon.com, looks at Obama’s financial master George Soros, Obama’s Catholic training and links to the Vatican and Colombian narco-terrorists, and even how the Obama Administration has created a marijuana counter-culture within U.S. borders. One explosive chapter looks at Obama’s inspiration, South African President Nelson Mandela, who was exposed as a secret member of the South African Communist Party after his death. America’s intelligence community, Kincaid argues in the book, must be retrained in the art of detecting subversion and preventing communist-inspired and radical Islamist violence. He says they failed to warn America in 2008 that Obama was a Marxist who couldn’t pass a basic background security check.

Order from Amazon.com


Mazen Malik: Oregon State Official Has Terrorist Support Background

By: Trevor Loudon | New Zeal

Mazen Malik

From Bombthrowers

Most Oregonians know Mazen Malik, a Senior Economist at the Oregon State Legislature, from his occasional appearances touting the alleged tax revenue bonanza that marijuana sales have brought to Oregon. But many likely do not realize that in the 1980s, Mazen Malik was an active supporter of Yasser Arafat’s Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), an anti-Israel organization whose horrific terrorist acts resulted in the deaths of thousands of innocent people.

It is important to understand that communists worked with radical Islamic organizations just as they do today. This unholy alliance has been described as the Red Green Axis and is discussed in Trevor Loudon’s film, the Enemies Within.

With this in mind, consider that the Line of March was an influential ’80s Maoist group that had openly supported the Soviet Union by 1987. Their publication Frontline listed Mazen Malik as a representative of the “General Union of Palestinian Students” for a June 1987 event titled “Fighting the Upsurge of Racist Violence.”

The “General Union of Palestinian Students,” or GUPS was established in 1959 in Cairo by Yasser Arafat himself. A long term KGB agent, Arafat led to GUPS into having an affiliation with the Soviet Union’s international youth front, the “World Federation of Democratic Youth,” or WFDY. According to a 1994 tape of current CAIR leader Nihad Awad, the “General Union of Palestinian Students” (which Awad lead) was “part of the PLO here in the United States.”

As an aside, the still-active “World Federation of Democratic Youth” is hosting a communist youth festival in Sochi, Russia in October 2017, where 20,000 young communists from all over the world will be gathered. The event is timed to coincide with the 100th Anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution and the venue was arranged through the personal intervention of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

It should be noted that Mazen Malik did not abandon radicalism in the 1980s. Through the early 2000s he took part in many marches and rallies against the Iraq War and in support of Palestinian statehood.

Malik further addressed an April 20, 2002 march organized by “Portland Peaceful Response Coalition,” to “coincide with an international day of action called by peace activists and other progressives in the Western Hemisphere and Europe who are seeking an end to U.S. and Israeli violence.”

Despite the tremendous power facing the Palestinian people, they would prevail in the end asserted Mazen Malik, one of the organizers of the demonstration. Malik also lashed out at the hypocrisy of U.S. diplomatic efforts that put the responsibility for ending the violence entirely on the shoulders of Yasser Arafat.

Additionally, Malik served as Oregon liaison for the far left “American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee” and was a leader of “Americans United for Palestinian Human Rights,” as well as the “Palestine Arab-American Association.”

Prior to service with the Oregon State Legislature in Salem, Mazen Malik was Chief Economist for the Oregon Department of Transportation. In these positions, Malik presumably has had access to high level infrastructural and political information. Much of this could be valuable to foreign intelligence services, terrorist organizations and state sponsored foreign commercial operations.

If Mazen Malik held a similar high level position in the US military, he would be subject to regular security background checks. Given his terrorist and communist connections, could he pass such a test?

Why is Mazen Malik trusted to hold such a high level civilian state government position?


U.S. Health Care Is World’s Best, Regardless of What The Left Says

By: Miguel A. Faria | Accuracy in Media

This is the second in a three-part series.

In Part 1 of this series, we discussed the content and tone of the political rhetoric leftist propagandists use to criticize the proposed GOP health care plans vis-à-vis ObamaCare. In part 2, we will describe the propaganda efforts used by progressives to cite dubious statistics to tar and misrepresent the U.S. health care system.

A recent commentary illustrates this propaganda. An article in The British Medical Journal entitled, “Medical error — the third leading cause of death in the U.S,” compares our “broken system” to those of other industrialized nations that purportedly are cheaper and better.

The Journal article cited by the author, in fact, had a significant caveat. “Medical error is not included on death certificates or in rankings of cause of death,” the article stated. The statement about medical error is “only an estimate by two researchers,” and “better reporting” is needed. Indeed, let’s begin with the British themselves.

British officials are so proud of their National Health Service they are willing to concoct figures, not only to praise their system, but also to lie about the fact they ration health care by queues and waiting lists, restrictions to specialists and access to life-saving medical treatments, and even outright denial of medical care to the elderly.

The Dallas-based National Center for Policy Analysis has pointed out that although the NHS claims, “British patients deaths or serious injuries due to medical errors is 11,000 cases a year,” the reality is quite different. As early as 2009, the House of Commons Health Select Committee reported, “thousands of NHS mistakes are covered up and that a better estimate is that 72,000 patients die each year.”

So much for medical errors in the U.S., which indeed occur, but at least are more objectively and accurately reported. Hidden in the statistics is the fact not only are the poor and disabled properly and promptly treated in the U.S., but the elderly are aggressively treated. In the U.S., potentially life-saving treatments, which carry risks for complications, are administered to patients seeking them in consultation with their physicians. These increase the chances for untoward reactions that are then reported as “medical errors” by medical and eagerly critical public health researchers.

Truth be told, Americans want the best health care money can buy and that prolongs life as long as possible – sometimes to excess. This reached the point that some progressive academicians have even proposed to restrict access to medical care at a certain age — proposals that have not been acceptable to the general population.

When comparing U.S. health care to those of the social democracies of Western Europe and other industrialized nations, proponents of socialized medicine (i.e., single payer system) argue about lower costs and alleged better medical care “in other industrialized nations.” In a recent article, Dr. David Stolinsky succinctly encapsulates the argument:

“We are told that despite all the money we spend on health care, America does not rank with the best in regard to infant and maternal mortality or in life expectancy. In fact, the difference is minimal. Life expectancy at birth for the European Union is 78.67 years, while that for the U.S. is 78.11 years ? only six months shorter.”

Progressive academicians and other proponents of socialized medicine neglect to mention the our mortality statistics also are affected by dramatic increases in fatal drug abuse and epidemic proportions of black-on-black crime.

Dr. Stolinsky asks:  “So what is killing Americans before the age of 60? Americans are. The No.1 cause of death for African-American males from the ages of 15 to 34 is homicide. Faster ambulance response and more trauma centers may reduce this figure somewhat. But clearly, this is not a problem of health care.”

Another problem is illegal immigration and providing necessary care to those coming from across the southern border. Dr. Stolinsky writes: “If women come across the border eight months pregnant, never having seen a doctor, is the fetal and maternal mortality a problem of health care? If pregnant and nursing mothers drink alcohol or use illegal drugs, can doctors solve the problem?”

Europeans are just now experiencing legal and illegal immigration on a large scale. Let’s wait and see new data and projecting statistics from Germany and Italy — that is, if officials are honest and release authentic data.

Although we could have used data from Los Angeles or Chicago, the drug and crime capitals of the United States, Dr. Stolinsky chose to use data from the District of Columbia in Washington, DC, to illustrate the problems of the inner cities. (It should be noted these three metropolitan areas are located in states or districts with the strictest gun control laws in the United States.) After describing the toll that crime, life-threatening sexually transmitted diseases, such as hepatitis and AIDS, as well as drug abuse have taken in the inner cities, Dr. Stolinsky writes:

“If you doubt this, check out the life expectancy and the rates of infant and maternal mortality in the various states. Compare the best figures with those from the District of Columbia, which is similar to other inner cities. For example, the maternal mortality rate for DC is 34.9 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births, compared with 2.7 in Massachusetts. The infant mortality rate in DC is 14.1 per 1,000 live births, compared with 4.5 in Utah. The life expectancy in DC is 72.0 years, compared with 80.0 years in Hawaii.”

In short, these statistics provide ample reason for why U.S. mortality rates do not surpass the Europeans.

Admittedly, as evinced by Dr. Stolinsky’s aforementioned statistics, the U.S. has its share of social problems because of our generosity in bestowing benefits, lenient immigration policy and permissive criminal justice system. But those are not problems with our medical care system.

If the U.S. health care system is so “broken,” as claimed by leftist propagandists, why do so many foreign dignitaries and private citizens still come to the U.S. seeking medical treatment? Why do Canadians, who have a fully socialized health care system, go south of the border to receive medical care in the U.S.? Why are an astounding 60 percent of Nobel Prizes in Medicine or Physiology won by American medical scientists? Why are cancer survival rates in the U.S. so much higher than in the rest of the world? Obviously, these questions answer themselves.

Certainly, there are problems in the U.S. health care system — for example, medical care delivery and prescription drugs are too expensive. The underlying cause of the problem is government involvement in health care. In a subsequent column, we will discuss how the free market has been perverted by government interference and further contravene other false claims promulgated by proponents of socialized medicine.


Miguel A. Faria, M.D. is a retired clinical professor of neurosurgery and long time medical editor. He is the author of Vandals at the Gates of Medicine (1995); Medical Warrior: Fighting Corporate Socialized Medicine (1997); and Cuba in Revolution — Escape From a Lost Paradise (2002). His website is http://www.haciendapub.com.


Politico Writer’s Beef with Trump: He’s Too Fat to be President. Seriously…

By: Jon Street | Accuracy in Media

Liberal television host and author Touré Neblett seized on a Politico article published Tuesday. The 2,500-word Politico article focused not on anything policy related, but instead centered entirely around President Donald Trump’s weight.

“Politico says Trumpy is the least athletic president in decades which is a nice & polite way of saying he’s a fat slob like Jabba the Hut,” Neblett tweeted Wednesday.

Yes, you read that right. Of all the issues facing the country right now, Ben Strauss, the author of the piece, elected to weigh in on Trump’s physical fitness to be president. What’s worse, Neblett used the story to basically fat shame the president, which liberals usually oppose.

The Left’s obsession with Trump’s “fitness” is nothing new, but usually it is his mental capability to carry out his constitutional duties that gets called into question.  In this particular Politico article, Strauss takes the mental fitness argument a step further.

“Is the President fit?” Strauss asked in the first part of the Politico headline. He doesn’t seek an objective answer. Instead, in the next sentence, Strauss unilaterally declares Trump as the “least athletic president in generations.” Straus goes on to explain “why it matters” — or at least why Strauss thinks it matters.

Strauss writes: “In the modern history of American presidents, no occupant of the Oval Office has evinced less interest in his own health. He does not smoke or drink, but his fast-food, red meat-heavy diet, his aversion to exercise and a tendency to gorge on television for hours at a time put him at odds with his predecessors.”

Forget for just a second that former President Barack Obama smoked cigarettes for the better part of his first term in office, despite former First Lady Michelle Obama constantly railing against the damaging effects that smoking can have on one’s body. Strauss instead went on to shame the octogenarian president for looking and acting like the majority of senior Americans.

“By any measure, America’s president is overweight, and medical experts say it could be affecting his health and his job,” Strauss wrote. Strauss doesn’t mention Trump is the oldest man ever to assume the nation’s highest office.

Strauss continued by pointing out how Trump “deviated” from his prepared remarks during a state visit to Saudi Arabia, which the White House said was because he was “exhausted.” Given his age and the timing and pace of the trip, this seems fair.

But not for Strauss, who insisted the White House official’s response was “not an excuse the Bull Moose would have made,” referring to former President Theodore Roosevelt, who was an avid outdoorsman.”Teddy Roosevelt went on legendary ‘rough, cross-country walks’ in D.C.’s Rock Creek Park and was once punched in the eye by a sparring partner half his age,” Strauss wrote. “John F. Kennedy projected an image of youthful vitality even as he secretly took painkillers for his bad back and other ailments”

“Gerald Ford was lampooned as a clumsy oaf on ‘Saturday Night Live,’ but he was a champion football player in college. George W. Bush, an avid mountain biker, ran 7-minute miles on his regular 5k workouts,” Strauss wrote. “Even Bill Clinton lumbered along on regular jogs to atone for his Big Mac habit.”

Strauss did acknowledge that Trump often hits the links at his golf properties, but he criticized the president for riding a golf cart. Never mind the security advantages of riding, as opposed to walking.

It also should be noted the criticism of Trump’s fitness habits comes from the same people who criticize him for golfing too much. Regardless of what one may say about the frequency of Trump’s golf outings, his swing is impressive for someone who is 71 years old.

Contrast that with the swing of Obama, who is two decades younger and also, in this clip, appears to be riding a card just as Trump does. Obama’s golf swing.

Like Republicans in general, the president is in a no-win situation. The media will grasp at anything to portray Trump as unfit to be president.

Criticizing a 71-year-old man who keeps his schedule for not being physically active and trying to fat-shame him because he likes hamburgers is petty, unconstructive and sadly indicative of a left wing media that still cannot accept that this particular 71-year-old came out of nowhere, thumbed his nose at conventional Washington and became the leader of the free world.

America has bigger, more important issues to worry about than the president’s weight. The sooner Strauss and others just accept that Trump was elected president, the quicker we can address the real challenges.


State Department Says No One Cares Anymore About Hillary’s Stupid Emails

By: Brian McNicoll | Accuracy in Media

Nate Silver undertook an interesting what-if project this week with a story on what would things be like if Hillary Clinton had been elected president.

Merrick Garland is on the Supreme Court, and Neil Gorsuch is not. Brian Fallon is the press secretary, and Sean Spicer is not. It is Hillary Clinton under investigation for ties to Russia, and not Donald Trump. Huma Abedin is the White House chief of staff.

Hillary feuds with the press. Her approval numbers at the six-month mark are lower than any president since the 1930s. She is more a caretaker than an implementer of bold new ideas. Congress went Republican, so her agenda goes nowhere. Most of what could be done through executive action was done by Barack Obama. And the press continues to hound her to show progress on something … anything.

Her answer, frustrating to her as well as the American people, is that we haven’t made major mistakes. We haven’t pulled out of the Paris climate accords or the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and our foreign policy “has largely been a continuation of Barack Obama’s.”

Silver says Clinton struck a deal with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell – he would get Garland confirmed, and she would allow him input on cabinet officials. This is how we got Joe Lieberman as Attorney General and Ryan Zinke as Secretary of the Interior.

It’s an interesting thought exercise, but some of it doesn’t ring true. Silver swallows whole the liberal theory that Trump would be disruptive and refuse to accept electoral results. In truth, he would be back to running his businesses and too busy to care within days.

Silver says Trump’s recalcitrance would contribute to a “national skepticism about Clinton.” There’s been a national skepticism about Hillary Clinton for 30 years.

And he says Republicans would be investigating Hillary’s email problems and considering articles of impeachment this very day if she had been elected. It’s hard to say if Republicans in Congress would be investigating the emails at this point if Hillary had won. But it’s not hard to say – because it is unarguably true – that we are not investigating her emails now.

A federal court has ordered the State Department to turn over 100,000 emails as part of the settlement of a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit. But according to Circa, the State Department argued at a hearing Thursday that it could not process the 100,000 emails because of a lack of manpower caused by a “hiring freeze” and said it switched to other projects because of the public’s lack of interest in the subject.

Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch, the group that filed the Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, said some of these emails are among those Clinton “failed to disclose” to the government when she served as secretary of state.

Last week, Judicial Watch released 448 pages of State Department documents from Abedin that it said showed preferential treatment to major donors to the Clinton Foundation and various campaigns. These included six email exchanges totaling 439 emails that Clinton had not turned over to the State Department previously. This further puts the lie to her statement that as far as she knew, she had turned over all her emails to the State Department.

The FBI gave the State Department a disk with 7,000 new emails on it that belong to Abedin and were taken from the laptop she shared with her husband, convicted child molester Anthony Weiner. But even those 7,000 can’t be released because, according to Fitton, State Department and Justice Department lawyers are “claiming they have to appraise them, whether they are personal or government, and then sift through what can be shared publicly.”

The court ordered the State Department to process documents at the rate of 500 pages per month, which means it will take until 2020 for most of the information to become public, Fitton said.

Trump has said repeatedly – he tweetstormed on this as recently as a month ago – that the Justice Department should get her emails and make them public. But his own Justice Department attorneys essentially conceded they were slow-rolling the project because of “diminished public interest.”

One insider told Circa, “There are still holdovers within the departments that don’t want to see these emails released, so slow-rolling these requests makes perfect sense. If the president wants these emails released, then he will have to demand that the agencies abide.”

Not for nothing does Silver speculate that upwards of 40 percent of voters – and more than 70 percent of Republicans – would want Hillary impeached given the circumstances. There is widespread distrust of her, her poll numbers are worse than Trump’s, and even she has admitted the trust issues created by the email scandals hurt her at the polls.

But in the view of the State Department, knowing what the former secretary of state was doing elsewhere in the world to shore up her chances of being elected here – what promises were made, what funds collected, etc. – is not of sufficient public interest to invest a few resources and finish the job?

Talk about your alternative universes.


Weekly Featured Profile – Dwight Welch


Dwight Welch, is the Pastor at United Church of Norman, UCC, Oklahoma and is also an Adjunct Professor at Oklahoma City Community College.

Welch studied Theology at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis as a MDiv. student with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). He also serves as a student pastor at First Christian in Sheridan, Indiana and did graduate work in philosophy while serving as a campus minister at University Christian Ministries at Southern Illinois University.

Dwight Welch is also a committed Marxist with a “progressive theological reflection on the relationship of God and the good in life.”

While studying in Indiana, Welch attended the Socialist Party USA National Convention, held at the Gateway Hilton, St. Louis, Missouri, October 19-21, 2007.

In 2009, Dwight Welch served as Secretary to the Central Indiana Democratic Socialists of America.

Today Dwight Welch is an active member of the newly founded Oklahoma City Democratic Socialists.

(Dwight Welch|more…)


No, Media … 26 Million People Won’t Die if Obamacare is Repealed

By: Miguel A. Faria | Accuracy in Media

First of a three-part series.

Of a fallen tree all make kindling, says the old proverb. And like most refrains, it conveys an element of truth.

The fact that Republicans are having difficulty agreeing on a winning alternative plan to ObamaCare makes both the Senate and House proposals looming targets for critics.

The Left’s ultimate goal is to dismantle the American health care system and turn it into an instrument for people control — the government as single payer, in other words, fully socialized medicine “as in all other industrialized nations.”

It has not been unsuccessful in this arena. Aided by the mainstream media, the debate keeps shifting leftward, and Republicans, despite majorities in both houses of Congress, do not seem to have a winning strategy.

Pundits and propagandists have spread more than the fair share of half-truths in their efforts to lend support to Democrats.

A recent writer, for example, lamented, “Millions of Americans who were able to purchase insurance since ObamaCare was enacted would lose coverage if either plan [the Senate or the House version] became law, and most of the savings from the tax cuts in their plans would be reaped by those with higher incomes.”

The first part of the statement is questionable and disingenuous. The vast majority, about 18 million of the estimated 20 million in question, had obtained health insurance only because they had been compelled to do so or pay the penalty imposed by ObamaCare for not having insurance. The rest have subsidized coverage paid by others saddled with higher premiums.

The second part of the statement is even more disingenuous because those “reaping the savings” are merely the ones being allowed to save some of their own money, instead of subsidizing others. The GOP plans revoke these impositions and bring more freedom rather than wealth redistribution.

But the verbiage in the writer’s statement is typical Democrat rhetoric pushing the debate towards socialism rather than freedom. In another article in the same newspaper, we read, “Reductions in spending are needed to pay for GOP proposed tax cuts.”

How is that for turning ideas upon their heads and perverting their meanings? In liberal mantra, reduction of wasteful spending and returning money to those who earned it is considered the government having to “pay” for the tax cuts. Whose money is it to begin with?

By sleight of progressive authoritarian hand and the naked force of sophistry over reason, suddenly, one’s money becomes the government’s, and those who want to keep their hard-earned money are accused of “reaping the savings” of tax cuts. And when the government returns their money, they call it “paying for tax cuts!”

Envy and class warfare are instigated to ignite passion with this rhetoric. Invariably, the liberal mantra elaborates that those “reaping the benefits” of tax cuts or those for whom the government “slashes benefits to the needy to pay for the tax cuts” are the wealthy.

The reality is different: It is the at least 53 percent of middle-class Americans who most heavily carry the load of taxation who would “reap the benefits” of less taxation and wasteful government spending. The super rich are too few to pull the wagon by themselves.

The 26 million presently uninsured Americans are misrepresented by the liberal media as being the most needy and “vulnerable,” and the poorest of Americans who still do not have access to medical care in the U.S. This of course is not true.

Our senior citizens are covered by the federal Medicare program, and the poorest Americans are covered by state-run Medicaid programs. And the truth is that eliminating waste, fraud and abuse in some of those programs would go a long way to better cover even more of those in need.

But the liberal media, even when wanting to appear objective, is not only biased but demands that the debate be limited to points that fit its agenda. For example, as we have seen, it refuses to consider costs and the consequences of wealth redistribution in expanding coverage. And its arguments soon degenerate to passionate rhetoric to push its pre-planned agenda.

The liberal media also avoids reporting human-interest stories of waste, fraud and abuse and shuns presenting sober and responsible analyses of projected costs. It steers clear of stories on the burden those social and health programs impose on the middle class who pay for them or the burden on businesses that must pay the exorbitant insurance premiums for their workers.

Consider the verbiage of yet another unsigned editorial in my local newspaper, the Macon (Ga.) Telegraph. (July 2):

“Though it [the Senate version of the GOP plan] would only throw 22 million people out of the health insurance door — it would save the government, by cutting Medicaid $772 billion over 10 years and it would eliminate $408 billion in subsidies for low-income people, those captured by opioids, pregnant mothers, the disabled and the most vulnerable in our society…. They have yet to put a human face on the issue.”

How is that for advocacy journalism? But despite the alleged good intentions of looking out for the vulnerable and low-income people, these entitlement programs are not without serious unintended and harmful consequences. For example, numerous studies have shown that many Americans in their prime of life and able to work are dropping out of the labor force because of the expansion of the welfare state. They simply prefer to not work and collect benefits. Others malinger, faking illnesses and injuries, to obtain fraudulent disability.

One can search the vast literature on the subject (avoided by the media) or just simply watch Judge Judy on TV to ascertain the reality of the statement. In both cases the government-dependent population continues to increase, and those sharing the burden have a heavier and heavier wagon to pull.

Medicaid spending has increased dramatically both under the administrations of Presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush. In 2000, Medicaid spending was $209 billion. By 2016, it had more than doubled to $575 billion. Americans with the lowest incomes and the “disabled” are not falling through the cracks as claimed. The deficit accumulated from this program alone is in the trillions of dollars.

As stated earlier, some, if not most of the 26 million without coverage today are members of the middle class, not eligible for either program and uninsured by choice. These Americans make a conscious choice to spend their money elsewhere because they believe they are healthy and they don’t want to subsidize others, particularly those with pre-existing medical conditions, through a government-approved insurance cartel.

Wise decision or not, under ObamaCare, these Americans chose to pay the penalty for not having insurance. People look after their self-interest, and in a free society, they should be allowed to do so, rather than being forced to participate in wealth redistribution schemes dreamed up by pandering politicians or conceived by others to forge presidential legacies.

Despite the impression created by the progressive-liberal media and even Hollywood celebrities, the health care problem is more about waging partisan politics and inciting class warfare by the Democrats and about furthering government control over individual Americans than it is about “people dying in the streets for lack of medical care” — another hyperbolic mendacity.

We already have mentioned Medicare and Medicaid. Veterans are covered by the Veterans Administration hospital system. True, many people complain about the VA system’s inefficiencies and waiting lists, but that is exactly what they will get with the single-payer system of socialized medicine that liberals, behind their partisan politics, are striving to implement through the back door.

Truth be told, no one is being left behind. And as falsely claimed, no one is dying in the streets of America because of lack of access to medical care. That is an outright lie, whether it is implied or stated by a Democrat or Republican president. By federal law, anyone who seeks medical care at an American hospital has to be treated regardless of ability to pay.

Just by acknowledging this fact and perhaps making an effort to decrease its bias and tone down its rhetoric, the liberal mainstream media could go a long way to improve the quality of the debate — and regain a portion of its damaged credibility.


Miguel A. Faria, M.D. is a retired clinical professor of neurosurgery and long time medical editor. He is the author of “Vandals at the Gates of Medicine”; “Medical Warrior: Fighting Corporate Socialized Medicine”; and “Cuba in Revolution — Escape From a Lost Paradise.” His website is http://www.haciendapub.com.