By: Lloyd Marcus
It was the mid 1950’s. Around 9 years old and the eldest of five, I along with my parents were extremely excited as we wooed and awed over our new home; new appliances and everything. Our family moved from a leaky roof, pot belly wood stove row house in the ghetto of east Baltimore to a brand new government highrise. Apartment 6B was our new home in the 11story building of all black residents.
Little did I realize that living in the projects and other life experiences would lead to my becoming a black conservative, a Christian and a Tea Party activist.
In a short time, I witnessed the building becoming an 11 story dangerous violent ghetto. Without the pride of ownership or earning their way, only a hand full of residents kept their apartments nice. We kids learned to play hand ball in the square on our floor because Mom thought the playground was too risky. Stairwells became dark bathrooms and dens of iniquity; broken elevators due to vandalism.
And yet, I constantly heard that everything was the white man’s fault. At 9, I sarcastically said, “How can we stop mean white people from sneaking in here at night urinating in the stairwells and breaking wine bottles?”
Dad was among a few blacks who broke the color barrier into the Baltimore Fire Dept. I vividly remember Dad’s outrage about our rent being raised, “Seventy-two dollars a month. They’re crazy. We’re movin’!” Sadly, my cousins on my mom’s side who lived in single mom households remained on welfare. With the exception of one who worked his way through college, my cousins lived wasted lives, serial out-of-wedlock births, substance abuse, AIDS, jail and entitlement mindsets. Several died young. Thus, the bad taste in my mouth for cradle to grave welfare and absentee fathers.
Dad winning Fire Fighter of the Year two times despite working under unfair and humiliating circumstances taught me about trusting and trying to do things God’s way, character, hard work, not whining and the greatness of America. Dad progressed from laborer to Doctor of Theology. Dad eventually won the respect of white racist firefighters who hated him when he first arrived at Engine 6.
Our family’s move out of Baltimore City to a black suburban community meant I would be bused to newly integrated Brooklyn Park Jr, Sr High School in Linthicum, Maryland. I still remember that first day when our two school buses with black students from neighboring Pumphery arrived. With the fear of the seventh grade, an inherited stutter and the sea of 1400 white faces, I was terrified.
My white art teacher, Mr Gomer, recognized my art talents which ultimately lead to scholarships from several white politicians, opportunities from white businessmen and a successful career as a graphic designer; advertising agencies and a major market TV station.
Drafted in the U.S. Army for two years, I learned that good and bad people come in all colors. Sharing the same skin color does not make someone your friend or a brother.
My gift of seeing beyond an invisible wall of race to see people as individuals rather than monolithic members of a race has been a source of great criticism all of my life.
Thus, when Obama came out as a presidential candidate, I logically listened to his vision for our great nation. When Obama told Joe the Plumber that he wanted to spread the wealth around, I knew his vision was wrong for my country. I passionately campaigned against him.
Apparently, I missed the point of 96% of black voters. Obama should have my support because we are both black. His agenda is irrelevant.
Obama is simply another Democrat pushing the same insulting bigotry of lowered expectations, class envy and cradle to grave government entitlements which have devastated the black community for decades. I joined the Tea Party because Obama’s implementation of his extreme liberal socialist/progressive agenda; his vowed fundamental transformation of America must be stopped.
I have traveled on 12 national bus tours, participating in over 400 tea party rallies. The extraordinary people I met are the salt of the earth. A white Texas couple proudly introduced me to two black babies they adopted from Africa. A terminally ill white fan in Michigan wanted to meet me before she died.
Democrat’s and mainstream media branding the Tea Party racist is the height of racism, irresponsibility and evil. These patriotic Americans are simply saying no to the left’s hostile takeover of their country.
I became a born-gain Christian in my twenties. I grew weary of my meaningless life of drugs, sex and partying. I asked God to help and He did. My faith keeps me strong, confident and focused in my quest to restore my beloved America to it’s former exceptional glory.
By: C. Steven Tucker
The Illinois Policy Institute has teamed up with the Liberty Justice Center to seek plaintiffs for a lawsuit against the PPACA – Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act – a.k.a. “Obamacare”. It will take every legal and legislative avenue at their disposal to stop Obamacare. Your information will be totally confidential, and there is no cost involved.
They’re looking for people to join a lawsuit that will challenge an IRS rule that extends Obamacare health insurance subsidies and the Obamacare “employer mandate” to states like Illinois where they shouldn’t apply because the state government hasn’t established its own insurance exchange.
As a result of this unlawful IRS rule, many people who would otherwise be exempt from the Obamacare individual mandate will be forced to buy insurance they don’t want. You may be eligible to participate in their lawsuit if you:
- Are a resident of Illinois or any of the following states: AL, AK, AZ, AR, DE, FL, GA, ID, IN, IA, KS, LA, ME, MI, MS, MO, MT, NE, NH, NJ, NC, ND, OH, OK, PA, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, WV, WI, or WY;
- Are ineligible for Medicaid;
- Have not been offered Obamacare-compliant health benefits from an employer;
- Are a nonsmoker;
- Have a household income between 100% and 400% of the federal poverty level in 2014 ($11,490 to $45,960 for a single person — see this chart for other household sizes); and
- Do not want to buy insurance for 2015 or, if you are 30 or over, either do not want to buy insurance or plan to purchase a catastrophic plan for 2015.
If you meet these criteria and are interested in helping us take our case to court — at no cost to you — please call Jacob Huebert at 312.263.7668, extension 219 or email him at [email protected].
Fill out this short survey to get started. Please respond no later than Friday, January 31, 2014
State-based exchanges and federally facilitated exchanges
Section 1311 of the PPACA describes state-based health insurance exchanges. That section outlines the powers granted to the IRS to provide APTC – “Advance Premium Tax Credits” (a.k.a. ‘subsidies’) that will be used to artificially lower the high cost of health insurance offered in a state-based exchange. Tied to those APTC’s is also the power granted to the IRS to levy a $2,000 or $3,000 excise tax (non-tax deductible) on all employers with 50 or more full-time employees (first 30 employees waived) if they do not provide PPACA approved health insurance. This is a lot of new power granted to the IRS and this is the primary reason the IRS is hiring thousands of new agents.
Section 1321 of the PPACA describes federally-facilitated exchanges and state-federal partnership exchanges – like the exchange the state of Illinois has chosen to establish. In these types of exchanges, the IRS is granted no authority to provide APTC’s or to levy excise taxes on any employer in that state for not providing PPACA approved health insurance. Since the crafters of the PPACA assumed that every state would willingly establish a state-based exchange, there was no money appropriated for federally-facilitated exchanges. Thus far 34 states have chosen not to open a state-based health insurance exchange.
The illegal action taken by the IRS
Here’s the kicker, in order to ‘fix’ this legal ‘opt out’ that section 1321 provides to states that choose not to open a state-based exchange. The Internal Revenue Service finalized a proposed rule on the 2 year anniversary of the passage of the PPACA that offers APTC’s -Advance Premium Tax Credits – through exchanges “established under section 1311 OR 1321 of the PPACA. Those six characters—”or 1321?—constitute an unconstitutional and as such illegal rewriting of the statute. By issuing tax credits where Congress did not authorize them, this rule also triggers APTC’s “subsidies” and imposes excise taxes on employers with 50 or more full-time employees in all 50 states with either a state-based, state-federal partnership or federally facilitated exchange. Since the IRS is not a Legislative branch, this action was an illegal action not authorized by Congress and it must not stand.
Worse yet President Obama is following that new proposed rule that was written by the IRS as if it was codified law. This illegal action and President Obama’s support of it has prompted Oklahoma Attorney General E. Scott Pruitt to amend his lawsuit to include a section that sues the IRS for illegally writing new law and granting itself power that it was not granted in the PPACA as originally written. Read more about Mr. Pruitt’s lawsuit here. Mr. Pruitt sat down with Fox News’ Sean Hannity to discuss the progress of his pending case against the IRS on December 6, 2013. Watch the interview below:
As of May 28, 2013 here’s where the numbers stand:
- Committed to a state-based exchange: 17 states and Washington, D.C. (described in section 1311)
- Planning for a partnership exchange: 7 states (described in section 1321)
- No to state-based exchange. Defaulting to Federal Exchange: 27 states (described in section 1321)
I recently commented about this illegal action taken by the IRS for Champion News talk radio on Chicago’s AM560TheAnswer radio:
By: Maggie Thornton
The following is the transcript of Senator Mike Lee’s (R-UT) inspiring TEA Party response speech highlighting what Republicans are doing to fix a broken government. For every charge that Republicans have nothing to offer, the GOP needs to answer it in front of a microphone. We have a stack of bills that could fix our broken and corrupt government, if only they could see the light of day in the Senate, and they might if the GOP talked about those bills, and talked about them, and talked about them.
The Daily Caller broke Lee’s speech down into five triumphant parts:
1) Lee slammed establishment Republicans
2) Lee called for protest and cited the Founding Fathers
3) Lee offered a populist Republican explanation of economic inequality
4) Lee Emphasized education, a social issue republicans have won on in the past, and can win on again in the future
5) Lee pushed [s]tates’ rights (READ: Also a great way to get out of the social issues debate, which Republicans are not winning.)
(Note: All emphasis is mine)
I’m Senator Mike Lee, from Utah.
In the few minutes I have tonight – I’d like to speak especially to those Americans who may feel they have been forgotten by both political parties:
Those individuals and families who work hard, play by the rules, balance their budgets, honor the Golden Rule … and don’t understand why their government in Washington can’t do the same.
You are probably as frustrated as I am about an ever-growing government that somehow thinks it is okay to lie to, spy on and even target its own citizens. Many hard-working Americans are discouraged and wondering what, if anything, can be done.
I believe we need to do what Americans have always done – come together and press for positive change. Protesting against dysfunctional government is a great American tradition, going back to the original Tea Party in Boston, about 240 years ago. Americans have a natural instinct to stand up and speak out when they know something is wrong.
In 1773, Americans had simply had it with a London-based national government that had become too big, too expensive and far too intrusive.
It is important to note, however, that had the founding generation stopped at just protesting against the kind of government Americans did not want, the Boston Tea Party would have been little more than a footnote in history. At most, it would have been remembered as just one more futile protest against an abusive national government.
Fortunately for all of us, those early patriots moved on from Boston and moved past their protest against the government they didn’t want. They marched forward on a road toward the kind of government they did want.
It took them 14 long years to get from Boston to Philadelphia, where they created, with our Constitution, the kind of government they did want.
In America, the test of any political movement is not what that movement is against, but what it is for. The founders made a point at Boston Harbor, but they made history in Philadelphia’s Independence Hall.
Unfortunately, in recent years, we have had no choice but to engage in a number of protests against our current president’s Washington-centered agenda.
As Americans we must always be willing to fight the Boston-type battles — boldly calling out bad policy whenever we see it – but we must do so with an eye toward Philadelphia, maintaining a positive focus on the kind of nation we want to be and become.
Today, Americans know in their hearts that something is wrong. Much of what is wrong relates to the sense that the “American Dream” is falling out of reach for far too many of us. We are facing an inequality crisis – one to which the President has paid lip-service, but seems uninterested in truly confronting or correcting.
This inequality crisis presents itself in three principal forms:
immobility among the poor, who are being trapped in poverty by big-government programs; insecurity in the middle class, where families are struggling just to get by and can’t seem to get ahead; and cronyist privilege at the top, where political and economic insiders twist the immense power of the federal government to profit at the expense of everyone else.
To be fair, President Obama and his party did not create all of these problems. The Republican Establishment in Washington can be just as out-of-touch as the Democratic Establishment.
However, tonight, as on numerous occasions of late, the President’s lofty rhetoric ignored the fact that his administration continues to leave poor and middle-class families further behind, while he and his allies insist that the real problem is “inequality” itself.
But where does this new inequality come from? From government – every time it takes rights and opportunities away from the American people and gives them instead to politicians, bureaucrats, and special interests.
Inequality – real inequality – is trapping poor children in failing schools to benefit bureaucrats and union bosses. It’s penalizing low-income parents for getting married, or getting better jobs.
It’s guaranteeing insurance companies taxpayer bailouts if Obamacare cuts into their profits.
Inequality is blocking thousands of middle-class jobs in the energy industry as a favor to partisan donors and radical environmental activists.
Inequality is denying viable, unborn children any protection under the law, while exempting unsanitary, late-term abortion clinics from basic safety standards.
It’s denying citizens their right to define marriage in their states as traditionally or as broadly as their diverse values dictate.
It’s the federal government hurting rural communities, especially in the west, by controlling and mismanaging public lands.
It’s changing laws without congressional approval, and spying on American citizens without constitutional authority.
And of course, Obamacare – all by itself – is an inequality Godzilla that has robbed working families of their insurance, their doctors, their wages and their jobs. Many Americans are now seeing why some of us fought so hard to stop this train-wreck over the last four years.
Government-driven inequality is the reason why, as hard-working families across the country struggle to make ends meet, six of the ten wealthiest counties in America are now suburbs of Washington, D.C.
Throughout the last five years, President Obama has promised an economy for the middle class; but all he’s delivered is an economy for the middle-men.
And tonight his party cheered as he asked for more of the same, as if the solution to inequality were … well … more inequality.
Critics might push back and argue that my own party has been part of the problem, too often joining the Democrats to rig our economy to benefit the well-connected at the expense of the disconnected.
I know, because I’m one of those critics.
But I’m speaking to you tonight because I think maybe – just maybe – that’s finally starting to change.
As a nation we are, once again, at a critical turning point.
Now, as in 1773, Americans have had it with our out-of-touch national government. But if all we do is protest, our Boston Tea Party moment will occupy little more than a footnote in our history.
Hopefully our leaders, reformers and citizens will join the journey from Boston to Philadelphia – from protest to progress. Together we can march forward and take the road that leads to the kind of government we do want.
We have a new generation of leaders in Washington with positive, innovative ideas – thoughtful policy reforms to, as my friend Senator Ted Cruz says -”Make D.C. listen.” Reforms to help poor families work their way into the middle class, to help middle-class families start to get ahead, and to level the playing field and put corporate and political insiders back to work for the rest of us.
Conservative reformers like Senator Marco Rubio, Congressman Paul Ryan and Congressman Jim Jordan are working on new welfare-reform ideas to help underprivileged families escape poverty.
Senator Rand Paul and I are working with some of the most liberal Democrats in Congress to reform the federal criminal-justice system – to help keep violent predators behind bars while creating opportunities for reformed, non-violent offenders to return to the families and neighborhoods that so desperately need them.
Senator John Cornyn has legislation that would empower states to improve K-12 education across the country.
Senator Tim Scott has reforms to improve our job-training programs. And I’ve introduced a bill to modernize higher education, making it more accessible and affordable for lower-income and non-traditional students.
Congressman Tom Graves has a transportation-reform bill to ensure our infrastructure dollars are invested in roads and bridges, and not wasted on bureaucrats and special interests.
Congressman Mike Pompeo introduced a bill to end all federal subsidies for the energy industry. And others are working on proposals to do the same for every industry – so that business profits are won from customers, not through political connections. After all, if we’re going to reform welfare, we really should start with corporate welfare.
One proposal that should directly help you and your family is a bill I have introduced to simplify our tax code, and provide relief from the hidden double-tax Washington currently imposes on working parents, especially moms and dads in the middle class.
When it comes to healthcare, we know the best way to repeal Obamacare is to deliver better solutions.
We can’t just return to the old system. Healthcare policy used to give too much power to insurance companies; Obamacare now gives far too much power to government. We know that real reform will put healthcare dollars and decisions where they belong, in the hands of patients and families and their doctors and nurses.
So reformers in both the House and the Senate are hard at work developing new, patient-centered reforms to control healthcare costs, ensure access to affordable coverage for all Americans, and provide extra help for the poor and the sick.
All of these proposals within this new conservative reform agenda, along with many more to come, mark the road to Philadelphia. These principles and these policies will work – and will put Americans back to work.
Not just by cutting big government, but by fixing broken government. Not just by making government smaller but by promoting bigger citizens, stronger families and more heroic communities. Our goal should be an America where everyone has a fair chance to pursue happiness – and find it. That’s what it looks like when protest grows into reform.
So if you’re one of those Americans that big government is leaving behind… if you work hard, play by the rules and teach your kids to do the same, I want you to know that your family will not be forgotten anymore.
This new generation of reformers still has a long way to go to win over our Party in Washington, and even further to go to earn your trust.
I am confident that our best days as a nation are ahead of us – not because of government, but because within America’s diverse society of individuals and families, neighborhoods and churches, businesses and communities, freedom doesn’t mean you’re on your own. Freedom means we’re all in this together.
I invite you to join us on the road to a more prosperous America – together we can create the kind of government we do want and the kind of nation our children and grandchildren deserve.
Thank you very much for your time. Good night, and God bless.