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Posts Tagged ‘Nancy Pelosi’

The Madness of Taxing Unrealized Capital Gains | Mises Wire

Posted by M. C. on November 6, 2021

Even more important is the question of what to do with capital losses. Billionaires do not just make money by exploiting the poor, but are rich because they take on business opportunities that sometimes turn out to be losers. Similarly, stocks and other securities can decline in value. Would billionaires receive tax refund checks in those years? For example, what would happen if the stock market had a sharp selloff in December? Would billionaires receive massive tax write-offs on unrealized losses in their portfolio, leading the IRS to send tax refund checks to Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, and Warren Buffett?

Keep in mind the original income tax law was sold on the premise it was only to tax the rich.

https://mises.org/wire/madness-taxing-unrealized-capital-gains

Georg Grassmueck

President Biden’s proposal to require roughly seven hundred US billionaires to pay taxes annually on unrealized capital gains has garnered wide support from Democrats as another step to make the rich pay for the uncontrolled spending by the federal government. House of Representatives speaker Nancy Pelosi says Democrats hope the plan will raise as much as $250 billion to help pay for expanding the social safety net and tackling climate change. The current tax system is already too complicated and adding another layer will not make the system any fairer or make rich people pay more in taxes. More importantly, the proposal is another scheme by the government that defies the reality and raises again questions of government overreach.

The proposal would reinvent how the government taxes investments not for everyone but just for the few hundred richest people. Under the current plan under discussion, capital gains on stocks and other traded assets would be taxed only for US taxpayers with over $1 billion in assets or $100 million in income for three consecutive years. What this amounts to is a different interpretation of the tax code for rich people. When an investor buys an asset, stock, real estate, or even a business, the asset hopefully becomes more valuable over time. Currently, the tax code requires the investor to pay a capital gains tax only when the investor sells the asset. However, under the new proposal the capital gain does not have to be realized in order to be taxed. Lawmakers are aiming to effectively increase the taxes rich people pay by rewriting the rules. Often investors hold on to their investments over many years while their assets increase in value, thus avoiding paying a capital gains tax until many years down the road, except for paying income taxes on the dividends and other cash distributions from the investment. In theory, a person could accrue capital gains indefinitely while never owing any taxes. In the proposal under consideration, the simple increase in the value in a portfolio will be taxed.

While the idea to get billionaires to pay more of their fair share in taxes seems to get lots of support from the public, lawmakers miss a key point in their excitement about having the rich pay more in taxes, the reality of the current tax system. The rhetoric of the super wealthy getting richer during the pandemic without having to pay taxes on the increases in wealth while regular taxpayers have to pay taxes on their income every year sounds very good to the tax-the-rich crowd. Surely, George Soros and other billionaires will comply and hand over their money without resisting. Actually George Soros applauds and supports this proposal while at the same time, according to the ProPublica report from June, Soros has not paid federal income tax for three years in a row. Similarly, Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk have not paid federal income taxes in some years.

The proposal defies reality as not all assets are as easy to value as publicly traded stocks. For example, a rare but valuable item like a precious painting or music album like the Wu-Tang Clan’s “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin”  would be even more difficult to tax which raises the question on how do you assess the value of less liquid assets. Billionaires are the type of investor with the means to purchase less liquid investments like rare pieces of art. More importantly, as the wealth of people increases, they have a bigger incentive to hire high priced tax accountants and tax lawyers to fight the internal revenue service every step of the way. Ultimately, the government would have to be prepared to fight long and complicated legal battles with billionaires to establish what constitutes a capital gain.

Even more important is the question of what to do with capital losses. Billionaires do not just make money by exploiting the poor, but are rich because they take on business opportunities that sometimes turn out to be losers. Similarly, stocks and other securities can decline in value. Would billionaires receive tax refund checks in those years? For example, what would happen if the stock market had a sharp selloff in December? Would billionaires receive massive tax write-offs on unrealized losses in their portfolio, leading the IRS to send tax refund checks to Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, and Warren Buffett? Ultimately, this will lead to the question when of valuations for unrealized gain taxes would be determined. Lawmakers forget that just because something increases in value does not mean the owner has the cash to pay taxes. The current rationale of taxing capital gains once the asset is sold avoids two fundamental problems with the proposal. First, the market alone should determine the fair market value of an asset, not the IRS according to some complicated formula defying reality. Secondly, even billionaires may not have the cash to pay taxes on unrealized gains. A tax on realized capital gains avoids those two problems: once an asset is sold, the true value is determined and the seller will have money from the sale to pay the tax bill.

While the current proposal will be supported by a large swath of the public, as the rhetoric is simply too appealing, taxpayers should be alarmed by this proposal. Once lawmakers have the power to tax unrealized gains, it will be just a matter of time before lawmakers running out of tax revenue will take aim at one of the largest sources of wealth hiding from the IRS, unrealized gains in real estate and mutual funds that the public holds. For example, CNBC reported that homeowners with mortgages saw their equity jump by 20 percent from a year earlier in the first quarter, which represents a collective cash gain of close to $2 trillion, or an average gain of $33,400 per borrower. Would it not be nice for the government to tax the increase in value in your house every year?

This proposal is dangerous and should be declared unconstitutional. As Ludwig von Mises explained, “‘Taxing the Rich’ Doesn’t Make Us Better Off,” and new taxes are always a danger to every productive citizen. Author:

Georg Grassmueck

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Something Big is Coming – American Thinker

Posted by M. C. on November 1, 2021

No matter how hard the mainstream press tries to bury such things, ordinary voters cannot miss the fact that the administration’s idiotic policies and tinkering already have resulted in supply shortages, higher prices, higher energy costs, and terrible schools that are miseducating their children and undermining parental authority. Just as bad, all this would lead to even higher taxes. They’re waking up and that means to me that the ground is shifting under the Democrats’ feet. That is “something big.”

https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2021/10/something_big_is_coming.html

By Clarice Feldman

Dilbert creator Scott Adams tweeted this week: ”The country’s energy is strange. Everything is amped up in every direction. Something big is coming.” He’s rarely wrong about such things.

Adams said he doesn’t know what that something big is, but I’m hoping it is a major shift in America’s political tectonic plates. I may be looking too hard for it, but I, too, feel it in my bones.

Infrastructure Faceplant

For one thing, the wacky spending program the Democrats were proposing and fiddling with seems to have hit the shoals, trapped between the far left and the more moderate senators Kyrsten Sinema and Joe Manchin. Even the leftward Politico cannot spackle over the dilemma, a dilemma that is the only thing preventing Democrats from turning our constitutional republic into a totalitarian socialist economic mess in which only the most authoritarian and corrupt rule over a greatly impoverished citizenry.

For the second time in less than a month, Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her leadership team had to delay a vote on Senate-passed infrastructure bill amid progressive opposition, denying President Joe Biden a much-needed win as Democrats’ bigger, $1.75 trillion social spending plan also remains in limbo.

“I think it’s wholly apparent that today was not a success,” said Virginia Rep. Abigail Spanberger, whose state has a high-stakes gubernatorial showdown Tuesday that Democrats were hoping to boost with the infrastructure vote.

“Because people choose to be obstructionists, we’re not delivering these things to my state or to the rest of the country,” the swing-district Democrat added. “I guess we’ll just wait because apparently failing roads and bridges can just wait in the minds of some people.”

Democrats slunk out of the House chamber embarrassed — furious at the liberals who dug in and a White House that refused to pressure them to relent — and openly fretting about the long-term repercussions, given the tough climb they face in the midterms.

Virginia Gubernatorial Race

Terry McAuliffe, who was supposed to be a shoo-in for a second term as governor of Virginia, seems to be in a lot of trouble. Good polls can only measure general sentiment in my view, but all that I’ve seen show that sentiment has rapidly shifted in favor of his opponent Glenn Youngkin. To my mind, McAuliffe’s fatal miscalculation was to stand with the teachers’ unions, the obstructive, dictatorial Loudon County school board against the parents. Northern Virginia is heavily populated by tech and professional federal employees who in recent years have tended to vote Democrat, but these are people who can be expected to be concerned with the public school education of their children, and McAuliffe, reflexively tone-deaf to such concerns, placed himself perilously on the third rail.

How bad is his campaign going? It could hardly be worse. So few people have turned out in places like Arlington, Virginia, that he’s skipped showing up at the final rallies — rallies designed to snowball voter support. At one of those rallies. Pharrell Williams, a noted hip-hop singer and music producer, told the crowd it’s okay if they vote for Glenn Youngkin — not something I’d think the rally organizers wanted to hear.

The odious and discredited Lincoln Project tried to help McAuliffe by staging a pretend white nationalist display for Youngkin. I suppose, because they were torn between trying to pay honor to diversity while smearing Youngkin, they included a young black man in the mix of demonstrators, immediately undercutting the message of the scam that this was a white nationalist demonstration. In fact, one of the “white nationalists” was the financial director for Young VA Dems. About the same time this ploy flopped, others reminded voters that McAuliffe had defended the present Democrat governor of Virginia Ralph Northam’s appearance in blackface costume, and it turned out that McAuliffe’s spokesperson (who also worked for the Harris and Biden campaigns) had posted racist tweets in 2012. Just as #MeToo backfired — this week against New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, now charged with a misdemeanor sexual offense against a staffer — the cancel culture mining of ancient racist comments is now backfiring against the Democrats who had made this something of a cottage industry.

Days later, McAuliffe was charged with accepting an illegal laundered $350,000 contribution from a Sri Lankan businessman. 

The National Legal and Policy Center is asking the FEC to “promptly investigate” whether the contribution to the Virginia gubernatorial candidate violated federal laws prohibiting campaigns from accepting political donations from foreign nationals.

“Terry McAuliffe has a history of accepting foreign contributions.  The FEC must fully investigate these serious charges that he accepted $350,000 in illegal foreign contributions for his current campaign,” said Washington, D.C. attorney, Paul Kamenar, counsel to NLPC, who drafted and filed the complaint with the FEC.

LycaTel LLC, owned by Sri Lankan-British national Allirajah Subaskaran, gave McAuliffe $350,000 in July, the Free Beacon first reported in early October. The company is a New Jersey subsidiary of Subaskaran’s U.K.-based telecom conglomerate, which boasts a complicated web of offshore businesses and has been the subject of tax-fraud and money-laundering charges in France.

(Of course, as you imagine, Northern Virginia voters, whose main source of news is the Washington Post, will know little of such things, as the paper actively supports McAuliffe and buries these stories, so if you know any please send them the link to this.)

If, as I hope, McAuliffe loses, it will mean a gut check for those Democrats heading into a 2022 reelection fight. It tells them that people are sick of this craziness and their own careers are in danger. I expect that since their personal political careers are the first of their interests, self-seeking congressional Democrats will cut their strings to the loonies in the Squad and the Sandernistas.

Changing the Climate

Ostensibly to chat with the Pope about such theological issues as climate change — apparently the latest religious belief superseding what most people consider Catholicism — President Biden (who reportedly took 800 staffers with him to the Climate Conference in Glasgow, Scotland) cruised through Rome in an 85-vehicle motorcade.

What more could you ask to show how seriously Biden takes the issue of greenhouse gases and fossil fuels?

Speaking of “serious,” how can you not laugh at a president so stupid that he said, “When you buy an electric vehicle, you can go across America on a single tank of gas figuratively speaking. It’s not gas. You plug it in.” Sure, you do, and you have to plug it in every few hundred miles and wait for hours for it to charge unless somewhere someone has invented some very very long and sturdy extension cords. And, of course, plugging it in requires electric power from somewhere, and there’s a substantial shortage of it because of the same loony energy policies that are now forcing up gas and electric power prices around the country and the world.

Immigration Follies

Thousands of aliens are heading toward the border to join the more than one million who already illegally crossed under this administration, and, almost entirely unvetted, have been transported around the country. Citizens, many of whom jumped through years-long hoops to satisfy what is still immigration law totally ignored by this administration, are incredulous at the latest report, as Roger L. Simon explains:

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration is in talks to offer immigrant families that were separated during the Trump administration around $450,000 a person in compensation, according to people familiar with the matter, as several agencies work to resolve lawsuits filed on behalf of parents and children who say the government subjected them to lasting psychological trauma.

“The U.S. Departments of Justice, Homeland Security, and Health and Human Services are considering payments that could amount to close to $1 million a family, though the final numbers could shift, the people familiar with the matter said.”

$450,000 a person? This when millions of actual taxpaying American citizens are suffering, barely able to make ends meet during the pandemic, and inflation is on a record pace. Not even Anthony Fauci, allegedly the highest paid government official, makes that much, at least in salary.

Psychological trauma? How about causing psychological trauma to a whole country at once? Never in my life have I heard anything so insane.

No matter how hard the mainstream press tries to bury such things, ordinary voters cannot miss the fact that the administration’s idiotic policies and tinkering already have resulted in supply shortages, higher prices, higher energy costs, and terrible schools that are miseducating their children and undermining parental authority. Just as bad, all this would lead to even higher taxes. They’re waking up and that means to me that the ground is shifting under the Democrats’ feet. That is “something big.”

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Erie Times E-Edition Article-Pelosi pushes ahead on $3.5T deal

Posted by M. C. on October 1, 2021

And there will be shock when the accelerating inflation goes into hyper-overdrive.

There is something called the Cloward–Piven strategy. It was concocted by two communist Columbia professors (shock!). The goal is “They stated that full enrollment of those eligible for welfare “would produce bureaucratic disruption in welfare agencies and fiscal disruption in local and state governments” that would: “…deepen existing divisions among elements in the big-city Democratic coalition: the remaining white middle class, the working-class ethnic groups and the growing minority poor. To avoid a further weakening of that historic coalition, a national Democratic administration would be constrained to advance a federal solution to poverty that would override local welfare failures, local class and racial conflicts and local revenue dilemmas.”[2]-Wikipedia

In order words break the economy and make US totally dependent on government. As former presidential left hand man Rahm Emanuel advised: Don’t let a crisis go to waste.

https://erietimes-pa-app.newsmemory.com/?publink=605a35376_1345f5d

Lisa Mascaro

ASSOCIATED PRESS

WASHINGTON – With President Joe Biden’s government overhaul at stake, Democrats charged into trouble Thursday as a promised vote on the first piece, a slimmer $1 trillion public works bill, faltered amid stalled talks on his more ambitious package.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi assembled her leadership team for an early morning meeting and emerged determined to push ahead, strike a deal with Biden and avoid what would be a highprofile setback if voting on the public works bill fails or has to be scrapped.

Democrats are deeply at odds with trust torn, as progressive lawmakers threaten to withhold votes on the roadsand- bridges infrastructure bill they view as insufficient unless it is paired with Biden’s broader vision. In the narrowly controlled House, Pelosi has no votes to spare.

“Step by step,” Pelosi said at the Capitol, suggesting a deal with Biden was within reach. “This is the path – it’s not a fork in the road. This is the fun part.”

The risks are clear, but so is the potential reward as Biden and his party reach for a giant legislative accomplishment – promising a vast rewrite of the nation’s balance sheet with an everslim majority in Congress. His idea is to essentially raise taxes on corporations and the wealthy and use that money to expand government health care, education and other programs.

The public works bill is one piece of that broader vision, a $1 trillion investment in routine transportation, broad-

See BILL, Page 4A

Continued from Page 1A

band, water systems and other projects bolstered with extra funding. It has won broad, bipartisan support in the Senate but has became snared by the broader debate.

Attention is focused on Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, centrist Democrats who helped steer that bipartisan bill to passage but have concerns about the overall size of Biden’s plan. They view it as too big, but have infuriated colleagues by not making any counter-proposals public.

Tensions spiked Wednesday when Manchin sent out a fiery statement, decrying the broad spending as “fiscal insanity” and warning it would not get his vote without adjustments. “I cannot – and will not – support trillions in spending or an all-or-nothing approach,” he said.

Manchin’s refusal to bring negotiations with Biden to a close enraged progressive lawmakers and almost ensured they would tank the bipartisan public works bill if there was no end in sight to the White House talks with the centrist senators.

Democrats’ campaign promises on the line, the chairwoman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, Rep. Pramila Jayapal of Washington state said after Manchin’s statement: “We probably have even more people willing to vote no on the bipartisan bill.”

In a deepening party split, centrists warned off canceling Thursday’s vote as a “breach of trust that would slow the momentum in moving forward in delivering the Biden agenda,” said Rep. Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla., a leader of the centrist Blue Dog Democrats.

Pelosi indicated she had spoken to Manchin – whom she called a friend, a fellow Catholic with shared values – and appeared determined to seal a deal between the centrist senators and Biden that seemed less likely just a day ago.

“We are proceeding in a very positive way to bring up the bill … to do so in a way that can win,” Pelosi said.

At the same time, Congress was moving to resolve a more immediate crisis that arose after Republicans refused to approve legislation to keep the government funded past Thursday’s fiscal yearend and raise the nation’s debt limit to avoid a dangerous default on borrowing.

The Senate was poised to vote Thursday to provide government funding to avoid a federal shutdown, keeping operations going temporarily to Dec. 3. The House was expected to quickly follow.

The debt ceiling debate shifts to October, ahead of another deadline when Treasury Department has warned money would run out to pay past bills.

Thursday’s congressional floor schedule was filled with question marks in the places where there should be the announced timing of votes.

With Republicans lockstep opposed to the president’s big plan, deriding it as slide to socialist-style spending, Biden as been hunkered down at the White House reaching for a deal with members of his own party for a signature legislative accomplishment.

The president canceled a planned trip to Chicago where he was to discuss the importance of COVID-19 vaccines, met separately with Manchin and Sinema at the White House and even showed up at Wednesday evening’s annual congressional baseball game, a gesture of goodwill during the rare bipartisan event among lawmakers.

“I think it’s pretty clear we’re in the middle of a negotiation and that everybody’s going to have to give a little,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said.

Manchin and Sinema are holding the keys to unlocking the stalemate over Biden’s sweeping vision, the heart of his 2020 campaign pledges. While neither has said no to a deal, they have yet to signal yes – and they part ways on specifics, according to a person familiar with the private talks and granted anonymity to discuss them.

Manchin appears to have fewer questions about the revenue side of the equation – the higher taxes on corporations and the wealthy – than the spending plans and particular policies, especially those related to climate change that are important to his coal-centric state. He also wants any expansion of aid programs to Americans to be based on income needs, not simply for everyone.

Though Sinema is less publicly open in her views, she focuses her questions on the menu of tax options, including the increased corporate rate that some in the business community argue could make the U.S. less competitive overseas and the individual rate that others warn could snare small business owners.

“Step by step,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, suggesting a deal with Presient Joe Biden was within reach. ANDREW HARNIK/AP

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‘I Thought I Was Going To Die’, Says Capitol Police Officer Who Held Door Open For Protestors On Jan. 6

Posted by M. C. on July 31, 2021

https://babylonbee.com/news/i-thought-i-was-going-to-die-says-capitol-police-officer-who-held-door-open-for-protestors-on-jan-6

WASHINGTON, D.C.—In a harrowing testimony before the January 6th Committee, Capitol Police Officer Lenny Burbo revealed his paralyzing fear as MAGA terrorist insurrectionist racists stormed the Capitol.

“I stood there, paralyzed by fear as I held the door open so people could enter,” said Burbo. “As boomer after boomer entered the facility in an orderly line and began to take selfies, I saw my life flash before my eyes. I literally thought I was going to die.”

When asked why he had politely held the door open for everyone to enter the building unimpeded, he replied that he feared for his life and that one of the larger rioters had come up to him and said “step aside cupcake” in an intimidating voice.

“I knew my only option was to step aside or be drawn and quartered by a throng of evil bad people who voted for Trump and are also racist,” he said as tears welled up in his eyes.

Officer Burbo has been awarded a medal of bravery since even though he opened the door for rioters, he really didn’t want to do it, and his heart was in the right place.

The FBI has issued a warrant for the man who called Officer Burbo a “cupcake” and is asking anyone with information to call Nancy Pelosi’s office immediately.

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The Bogus January 6 Commission Poses a Real Threat to Freedom | Mises Wire

Posted by M. C. on May 26, 2021

Congress has long been worse than useless as a fact-finding agency. “Oversight” is a euphemism for stupefying congressional procedures designed to avoid discovering information that might embarrass their allies.

The media is touting the fact that Tom Kean and Lee Hamilton, the cochairs of the 9/11 Commission, have endorsed a commission to investigate January 6. But invoking Kean and Hamilton is like relying on the Three Stooges as references for a job application at a pie factory. 

https://mises.org/wire/bogus-january-6-commission-poses-real-threat-freedom

James Bovard

“Truth will out” is the most popular fairy tale in Washington. Members of Congress are clashing over whether politicians will appoint an “independent” commission to reveal the facts behind the January 6 Capitol ruckus. Proponents are portraying the issue as a simple choice between “truth or Trump.”

Recent history provides no reason to expect a politically controlled process to expose facts that undermine powerful politicians. Congress has long been worse than useless as a fact-finding agency. “Oversight” is a euphemism for stupefying congressional procedures designed to avoid discovering information that might embarrass their allies. A senior House Republican admitted in 2004: “Our party controls the levers of government. We’re not about to go out and look beneath a bunch of rocks to cause heartburn.” Most members of Congress are more likely to grovel before federal agencies than to challenge their power. “How are you so great and how can we help you?” is the usual response when the FBI director testifies, as Guardian columnist Trevor Timm noted in 2016.

There is no reason to presume that a commission investigating January 6 would not be hogtied official stonewalling. Former Senate Intelligence Committee staff director Andy Johnson observed in 2014: “The fog of secrecy made a mockery of oversight” of the CIA torture scandal. The Obama administration did not object even when the CIA illegally spied on a congressional committee to thwart the torture investigation. Both Bush and Obama administration officials repeatedly lied during congressional testimony on war on terror policies but faced no consequences. But everything would be different in this investigation, right?

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her team want a congressionally appointed commission in lieu of disclosing what actually happened on January 6. Cameras posted in and around the Capitol recorded fourteen hundred hours of film on January 6, but very little of the evidence has been publicly disclosed. Fourteen news organizations have requested that the Justice Department publicly release key videos on the federal court’s electronic dockets but no such luck. Capitol Police chief lawyer Thomas DiBiase warned that “providing unfettered access to hours of extremely sensitive information to defendants who already have shown a desire to interfere with the democratic process will … [cause that information to be] passed on to those who might wish to attack the Capitol again.” But it is also “interfering with the democratic process” to withhold evidence of actions which have been endlessly demonized by the president, top congressional leaders, and their media allies. 

Disclosing the video could settle the question of whether most protestors behaved like violent attackers or gaping tourists. Julie Kelly, writing for American Greatness, recently posted a forty-five-second video clip of protestors after they entered the Capitol that day. Capitol Police officer Keith Robishaw tells a group of protestors: “We’re not against … you need to show us … no attacking, no assault, remain calm.” The citizens shown in that clip don’t appear to have been hell-bent on overthrowing the government that day.

The media is touting the fact that Tom Kean and Lee Hamilton, the cochairs of the 9/11 Commission, have endorsed a commission to investigate January 6. But invoking Kean and Hamilton is like relying on the Three Stooges as references for a job application at a pie factory. 

Kean and Hamilton issued a joint statement boasting about the 9/11 Commission: “We put country above party to examine, without bias, the events before, during, and after the attacks…. The January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol was one of the darkest days in our history. Americans deserve an objective and accurate account of what happened. As we did in the wake of September 11, it is time to set aside partisan politics and come together as Americans in common pursuit of truth and justice.”

The 9/11 Commission “pursued truth and justice” by permitting the White House to edit the final version of their report before it was publicly released. Despite its canonization inside the Beltway, that report would not be admissible in a court of law, because it relied on torture for many of its key assertions. The New York Times’s Philip Shenon, the author of The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation, noted that “more than a quarter of the report’s footnotes—441 of some 1,700—referred to detainees who were subjected to the CIA’s ‘enhanced’ interrogation program.” Shenon reported that commission members “forwarded questions to the CIA, whose interrogators posed them on the panel’s behalf. The commission’s report gave no hint that harsh interrogation methods [including waterboarding] were used in gathering information.” The commission’s report was released months after shocking photos from Abu Ghraib and key Justice Department and Pentagon memos leaked out, exposing the Bush administration’s torture regime. Yet, as Shenon noted, “The commission demanded that the CIA carry out new rounds of interrogations in 2004 to get answers to its questions.” The 9/11 Commission became profoundly complicit in the torture at the same time it pretended to objectively judge the Bush record.

The commission report was released in July 2004 at the same time that Bush was exploiting the 9/11 attacks and the Iraq War for his reelection campaign. The commission ignored evidence compiled by a joint House-Senate investigation revealing that Saudi government agents bankrolled multiple Saudi hijackers in the US prior to the attacks (fifteen of the nineteen hijackers were Saudis). But the Bush administration suppressed those twenty-eight pages of that congressional report and they were not released until 2016. Bush embraced Saudi leaders while insisting that Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein was somehow to blame for 9/11. If the 9/11 Commission had quoted the 2002 FBI memo stating that there was “incontrovertible evidence that there is support for these [9/11 hijacker] terrorists within the Saudi Government,” Bush might have been seriously damaged, but 9/11 commissioners chose to serve the White House rather than truth. Kean and Hamilton remain venerated by the media, because their kowtowing buttressed public trust in the political system.

Would an investigation of January 6 be more honest than the investigation of September 11? President Biden and Democratic congressional leaders are vested in the “terrorist attack/Pearl Harbor” narrative that they established within hours of the fracas. Democrats still refer to the protestors murdering a Capitol Police officer long after the belated revelation that he died of natural causes.The New York Times noted that that advocates of a January 6 commission insist it is “an ethical and practical necessity to fully understand the most violent attack on Congress in two centuries.” Tell that to the Puerto Rican nationalists who shot up Congress in 1954 or to Congressman Steve Scalise and two other Capitol employees who were shot by a Democratic Party zealot in 2017. If such “facts” are the baseline for accuracy, then citizens can start scoffing long before a commission issues a final report.

The biggest illusion behind the push for a January 6 commission is that there is a political constituency in Washington for truth. But that hasn’t been the case for decades. As French essayist Paul Valery warned long ago, “At every step, politics and freedom of mind exclude each other.”

In the same way that it took almost fifteen years for some key facts about the 9/11 attacks to be revealed, it may be months or years until key damning revelations about the Capitol clash are extracted from federal agencies or private individuals and groups. Creating a pseudoindependent commission is more likely to codify a deceptive but politically profitable storyline than to expose facts that undercut powerful Washingtonians or government agencies. 

A façade of political “truth” can be more dangerous than no disclosure at all. Biden and congressional Democrats are seeking to turbocharge their push for a new domestic terrorism law to permit widespread federal crackdowns on their opponents. Any rigged commission would likely pour gasoline on a fire that could singe far more American rights and liberties. Author:

James Bovard

James Bovard is the author of ten books, including 2012’s Public Policy Hooligan, and 2006’s Attention Deficit Democracy. He has written for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Playboy, Washington Post, and many other publications.

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Public Servants or Parasites? – American Thinker

Posted by M. C. on February 12, 2021

The saddest thing is Mr. Green feels he has to ask the question.

Don’t forget the FBI. It’s in a class all by itself. Our sworn law enforcement agents initiated a coup attempt against a duly elected president. They set a perjury trap for his national security advisor. They even falsified evidence to a FISA court.

https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2021/02/public_servants_or_parasites.html

By John Green

I have a question.  When did politicians and federal employees start calling themselves “public servants”?  Even more importantly, why are we letting them?  It’s almost as if they’re trying to claim the mantle of nobility for making a sacrifice in the public interest.  But I don’t understand what that sacrifice is.  They’re paid better and have better benefits than most private-sector employees.  They’re rarely held accountable for their performance.  Why do we treat them as if they’re serving a higher calling than any other profession in the country?

Take Joe Biden, for example.  He claims to have been in public service for over 50 years.  But what has he done in that time?  He was the first senator to initiate a personal attack on a Supreme Court nominee.  His attack on Robert Bork was shameful, and helped create the current environment of Supreme Court politicization.  He also used the power of his office to enrich his family members.  Exactly how did lunch-bucket Joe become a multimillionaire on the salary of a politician?  I fail to see how that has been a service to the country.

Joe certainly isn’t alone. Was Nancy Pelosi serving the public interests when she withheld COVID-19 relief for months — just to deny President Trump a win?  Was she also serving her constituents when she bought stock in Tesla just days before President Asterisk signed an order directing all agencies to switch to electric cars?  There’s a term for that — “insider trading.”  Being the civic-minded public servant she is, I’m sure she’ll be sharing her windfall with her constituents.

It’s not all about money.  Some politicians have a completely different idea of providing service.  Eric Swalwell placed himself in servitude to a Chinese spy.  Exactly what “service” did Eric provide?  Was it anything that would allow him to claim nobility?  I mean in the U.S. — not in China.

Let’s not forget the bureaucrats that “serve” our nation.  Look at the EPA. They’re good at two things — choking the life out of commerce, and polluting rivers.

In the name of serving the public interest, the IRS targeted the Tea Party, thus silencing their voice in the midst of a presidential campaign.  They also leaked confidential tax records to the press, and provided tax records to the FBI without a warrant.  Isn’t it noble of them to poke us in the eye while taking our money?  Perhaps the next time you’re at the grocery store checkout, the clerk should send your shopping list to child protective services rather than thank you.  It would be the “public servant” thing to do.

Don’t forget the FBI. It’s in a class all by itself.  Our sworn law enforcement agents initiated a coup attempt against a duly elected president.  They set a perjury trap for his national security advisor.  They even falsified evidence to a FISA court.

I’ve heard the arguments that the FBI rank and file are honest and professional.  We shouldn’t blame the whole FBI for a “few bad apples.”  What complete balderdash!  If most of them were honest, where were the whistleblowers during the investigation of President Trump?  As far as being professional, how did they fail to prevent the Boston Marathon bombing — even after they’d received a tip that the Tsarnaevs were up to something?  I have the same question about the Pulse Nightclub massacre.  Was it also just a “few bad apples” that tried to frame Richard Jewell for the Atlanta Olympics bombing?  The FBI even had warnings about the 9/11 attack, yet failed to act.

Of course, our highly professional FBI agents were able to determine that a noose was really a garage-door pull.  It only required 15 agents and five days to make that determination.  That is some cunning police work!  It appears that the FBI is either using their badges to target political enemies, or they’re just a modern-day version of the Keystone Cops in tailored suits.  But sacrificing for the public interest — I’m not seeing it.

These are just a few examples.  The other alphabet soup agencies aren’t any better.  Employees across all federal agencies formed the “resistance” to fight all things Trump.  They gave us four years of leaks and unconfirmed anonymous sources undermining anything Donald Trump tried to accomplish.  They did it all because they decided we needed something other than what we voted for.  How would you rate a waiter that brings you want they want to serve you, not what you ordered?

Spare me the claims of nobility.  Who’s really laboring to benefit the country?  Is it politicians and bureaucrats whose only focus seems to be amassing power and choking commerce?  Or is it the nameless workers who get up at dawn every day to keep this country running.  The real nobility belongs to the farmers who put meals on our tables, the truckers who ensure supplies arrive on time, and the linemen that keep the lights on.  As for our self-proclaimed federal “public servants,” — they’re overpaid employees with lifetime job security, at best.  At worst, they’re parasites on society with aspirations to become our rulers.

The next time a politician or bureaucrat says they’re “serving” me — I have one thing to say: I want my tip back.

John Green is a political refugee from Minnesota, now residing in Star Idaho. He is a retired engineer with over 40 years of experience in the areas of product development, quality assurance, organizational development, and corporate strategic planning. He can be reached at greenjeg@gmail.com

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Tomorrow, Come Here Tomorrow…. | Kunstler

Posted by M. C. on October 12, 2020

Is it possible that some Democratic Party voters begin to suspect that the party officials running this game have lost their minds? A good signifier, of course, is the ghostly figure carrying their battle-flag, Mr. Biden, the Flying Dutchman candidate whose mind slips in and out of fog-banks as he navigates the shoals of defeat. Why did the Party ship out with him on the poop-deck?

https://kunstler.com/clusterfuck-nation/tomorrow-come-here-tomorrow/

James Howard Kunstler

The Coen Brothers must be writing Nancy Pelosi’s script now, a kind of Macbeth update set in a swampy Potomac lowland at Halloween time: Madam Speaker rides her fabled scepter up in the night sky, around the capitol dome, across the moon’s laughing face, to the White House, trailing vapors of hatred and malice as she curses the Golden Golem within. Her mask matches her designer frock, woven of cobwebs with dark strands of enmity. Her hair is perfect. Her flight-path not so much, as the Golem below easily shoots her down through the oval office window with a rubber band and a paper clip and she augers, smoldering, into the rose garden… Fade out….

Well, tomorrow is here, and exactly the hour this blog regularly gets posted is when Mrs. Pelosi aims to announce her latest scheme for ousting Mr. Trump: perhaps a bill for some kind of new 25th Amendment commission to work around the inconvenience of the law as currently configured, that is, an executive branch prerogative. The stunt has two purposes: 1) to paint Mr. Trump as unfit — a song as old and boring now as I am Woman, Hear me Roar — and 2) to put up a smoke-screen diverting voters’ attention from her obdurate refusal to compromise on the latest Coronavirus relief bill.

The paranoid hysteria on display among the Party of Chaos suggests that those polls showing Ol’ White Joe Biden up twelve points may just be more media dis-info. The purpose: to claim, when the time comes, that the President won reelection by some kind of subterfuge, and justify an all-out post November 3rd Lawfare offensive to challenge the ballots in every swing-state, and do exactly what they are blaming Mr. Trump for in advance: confounding an orderly resolution of the peoples’ will.

Is it possible that some Democratic Party voters begin to suspect that the party officials running this game have lost their minds? A good signifier, of course, is the ghostly figure carrying their battle-flag, Mr. Biden, the Flying Dutchman candidate whose mind slips in and out of fog-banks as he navigates the shoals of defeat. Why did the Party ship out with him on the poop-deck? My guess would be: to deflect indictments of himself and many other former officials as the steady flow of documentary evidence gets released by new DNI John Ratcliffe, including a batch this past week showing pretty incontrovertibly that everybody and his uncle in the Obama executive branch was keenly aware that RussiaGate was a Hillary campaign ploy and allowed themselves to be weaponized into the scheme — under the assumption that she couldn’t lose and they’d never be found out.

She lost. They’re found out. Grand juries have been convened by Mr. Durham. Something wicked is coming their way. Their ship is going down and the rats are all squeaking desperately in the scuppers at the rising water. Won’t this all be a shock to that crew of media fabulists who stupidly maintain that the Mueller Report actually proved something — the David Frenches, Max Boots, and Rachel Maddows of this world and their True Believer followers? History is rhyming again. It’s like 1794 in Paris. The Jacobins’ Reign of Terror comes to its sudden and ignominious end with Robespierre bawling under the national razor. So does today’s Reign of Perfidious Sedition close, with Jim Comey bawling, “I can’t recall,” into his laptop.

Incidental to this is the breaking news — sure to not be reported in The New York Times or by CNN — that one Devon Archer, business partner of Hunter Biden (and John Kerry stepson, Christopher Heinz) has just had his previously overturned conviction for security fraud reinstated by a federal appeals court. Sound abstruse? Yeah, kind of, but, believe me this boy is in some serious hot water, the rap being a federal one, and Mr. Archer now poised to sing like a canary to John Durham’s posse about his various financial exploits in Ukraine and other foreign lands with Joe Biden’s son (and Mr. Kerry’s stepson) in exchange for lighter jail time. You just watch.

Keep your ears pricked also for developments involving Senate Select Committee on Intelligence ranking member Mark Warner (D-VA) and his role in 2016-17 as an active disseminator of Steele Dossier RussiaGate dis-info in coordination with the George Soros funded Democracy Integrity Project, run by former Dianne Feinstein chief-of-staff Dan Jones and assisted by swamp lawyer Adam Waldman, a Steele / Warner go-between who happened to be a $40,000-a-month lobbyist for one Oleg Deripaska, a Russian billionaire and Clinton Foundation donor (at least $1-million) who also employed Christopher Steele as a dis-info errand boy. Unpacking that one will be like unpacking the surgical batting in a sucking chest wound. Scrub for it.

In this now bi-polar nation, the mood swings get wilder by the week. The President had a bit of a rough seven days, what with his Covid-19 treatment at Walter Reed and stunningly rapid recovery, which sent his adversaries into a transport of hebephrenic distemper. Vice-president Mike Pence calmed the waters a little bit in his Wednesday meet-up with the Harris Administration candidate — no doubt the rogue housefly poised above his right ear fed him juicy debating points. Kamala Harris demonstrated a talent for mugging, face-pulling, eye-rolling, and leering. If the veep thang doesn’t work out, she might consider a career as a mime. Her home turf, San Francisco, used to be full of them until the local pols let homeless junkies take over the streets.


This blog is sponsored this week by McAlvany ICA. To learn more visit: //icagoldcompany.com/

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Nancy Pelosi and Liz Cheney Unite Against Putting America First | The American Conservative

Posted by M. C. on July 29, 2020

This episode captures why the Washington establishment loathes President Trump. Hint: it has nothing to do with the smears accusing him of racism or Russian sympathies.

Trump is the only president to challenge the internationalist interventionist orthodoxy that’s ruled Washington unquestioned for the last 70 years.

https://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/nancy-pelosi-and-liz-cheney-unite-against-america-first-foreign-policy/

Ending wars is the one truly heretical act in Washington.

WASHINGTON, DC – JULY 21: U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) speaks during a news conference with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and other Republican members of the House of Representatives at the Capitol on July 21, 2020 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

After President Trump stated his desire to withdraw troops from Afghanistan, Germany and South Korea, the bipartisan war party sprang into action.

Veto-proof majorities in both houses of Congress approved a defense appropriations bill that authorizes $740 billion in military spending. Along with all the other dubious and downright awful provisions, the House’s version of the bill has included a measure designed to thwart the president from bringing troops home. House Democrats worked with Liz Cheney (R-WY) on an amendment putting several conditions on the administration’s withdrawal from Afghanistan, requiring the White House to certify at several stages that further reductions wouldn’t jeopardize counterterrorism or national security.

This episode captures why the Washington establishment loathes President Trump. Hint: it has nothing to do with the smears accusing him of racism or Russian sympathies.

Trump is the only president to challenge the internationalist interventionist orthodoxy that’s ruled Washington unquestioned for the last 70 years.

Let’s go back to 1949, to the creation of NATO and the initial deployment of troops to Europe.

Joe Stalin and world communism was on the march, we were told. Russia controlled half of Europe and would take the rest—along with Korea—unless we acted. President Truman demanded American boys be ready to fight Russia in Germany, Japan, Greece, Turkey, Korea, wherever.

But even in that climate of crisis, support for permanent war was not unanimous.

Senator William “Wild Bill” Langer (R-North Dakota), one of the eleven Republicans in opposition (along with just two Democrats) called NATO “a barren military alliance directed to plunge us deeply into the economic, military and political affairs of the other nations of Europe.”

We’re still plunging new depths, ever seeking new frontiers and new missions for the barren alliance.

When President Trump declared before the immobile faces of Mt. Rushmore, “A nation must care for its own citizens first. We must take care of America first,” he was channeling that original America Firster, Joe Kennedy.

The man who would father three senators and a president offered this advice in 1950 (none of his children took it): America needs “to get out of Korea” and “apply the same principle to Europe.” We must “conserve American lives for American ends, not waste them in the freezing hills of Korea or the battle-scarred plains of Western Germany.”

Or in the mountains of Afghanistan or the deserts of the Middle East.

When you hear President Trump ask NATO countries to up their defense spending, compare that to the words of Joe Kennedy: “We cannot sacrifice ourselves to save those who do not wish to save themselves.”

Nancy Pelosi and her ilk call Trump a Russian asset for daring to put the interests of this country before empire.  Nothing new there.  Today’s Russia-baiters are cut from the same cloth as an earlier generation of liberals.

In 1951, The Nation magazine accused “Herbert Hoover and a good portion of the Republican Party” of being captured by Moscow—that portion opposed to NATO, because Hoover doubted the effectiveness of deploying ground troops against the communist nations.

The New Republic seconded the motion: refusing to commit American troops to NATO “may lead Stalin to attack Western Europe” and keep advancing until his minions “would bring out in triumph the first Communist edition of the Chicago Tribune.” Mitt Romney and his fellow impeachment travelers remain convinced we must fight the Russians over there so we don’t have to fight them over here!

Back then, the bipartisan war party insisted the president could send troops abroad without asking Congress. Now when President Trump wants to bring them home, Congress claims it has the authority to stop him. Whatever it takes to keep the war machine properly greased.

Until Trump, George McGovern was the only candidate of a major party to call for drawing down troops in Europe and Korea. The sentiment in McGovern’s 1972 acceptance speech is pure America First: “This is also the time to turn away from excessive preoccupation overseas to rebuilding our own nation.”

The establishment has hated McGovern ever since for the same reason they hate President Trump.

The America First program would dismantle the imperial project that brought us NATO and has kept us on permanent war footing until today.

The foreign policy sachems built a “post-war rules based international order” on the premise the United States can and must remake the world. They stationed our troops abroad and launched wars with no end. They merged the American economy with that of the rest of the world, destroying America’s industries, high wage scales and standard of living in the process. They constructed a permanent national security state with unchecked powers to pursue anyone including the president.

The precious “rules based international order” is empire by another name. To those who support it—Democrat, Republican, liberal, conservative, neoconservative, academics, lobbyists and pundits—it is the One True Faith.

Anyone who opposes it is anathema. Even the elected President of the United States.

about the author

Curtis Ellis is Policy Director with America First Policies. He was a senior policy advisor on the 2016 Trump campaign and Presidential Transition Team and served as special advisor to the Secretary of Labor in  the Trump administration.

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Democrats drop controversial surveillance amendment | TheHill

Posted by M. C. on May 28, 2020

“It would be unconscionable for the Democratic House to pass any PATRIOT Act reauthorization without critical privacy reforms that would pass the Senate.

Except when it is.

Someone was afraid the amendment would end up as something more than just faux patriotism.

Someone like the CIA or FIB.

https://thehill.com/policy/technology/499784-democrats-drop-controversial-surveillance-amendment

House Democratic leaders have dropped plans to vote on a controversial amendment aimed at blocking law enforcement from accessing Americans’ web browsing history that had threatened to scuttle a vote on reauthorizing three surveillance programs, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer‘s (D-Md.) office confirmed.

Support for the amendment, sponsored by Reps. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.) and Warren Davidson (R-Ohio), has fractured over the last day, with progressive groups and lawmakers pulling support.

House lawmakers seeking the amendment initially pushed for language mirroring a measure offered by Sens. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Steve Daines (R-Mont.) in the Senate that would require a warrant anytime law enforcement wanted to access web browsing data.

The amendment that was ultimately submitted to the Rules Committee on Tuesday narrowed that protection to U.S. persons — something that would exclude individuals in the U.S. on green cards or other visas.

Wyden initially released a statement praising the Lofgren-Davidson measure, but pulled his support following comments from House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), who was involved in developing the House amendment text.

Schiff in a statement to reporters seemed to suggest that the measure would allow room for law enforcement to continue the collection of Americans’ records as long as they are relevant to a foreign intelligence investigation, an issue that critics have said is left open to interpretation in the current amendment.

Multiple progressive groups — including Demand Progress and Fight for the Future — released statements Wednesday pushing lawmakers to vote against the amendment and underlying bill.

Asked during a press conference about the decision not to vote on the bipartisan amendment, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) acknowledged that it was under consideration, but “we decided that where the votes were, were to go with” the Senate bill.

“We have to have a bill, and we have to have it signed. … That bill in the Senate goes a long way and it is strongly bipartisan. … We hope that it would be the bill that could get the signature of the president,” she said.

It is not immediately clear whether dropping the amendment will give Democrats the votes necessary to push through the reauthorization package.

President Trump tweeted Tuesday night that Republicans should oppose the underlying surveillance reauthorization bill because of alleged abuses under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and Republican Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) raised similar concerns during speeches on Wednesday.

A source said that Scalise and Trump spoke on Wednesday “and agreed that this bill should not move forward in the House in its current form.”

“We must get to the bottom of the abuses that took place under FISA. Period,” the source added.

Removing the amendment may also cost Democratic leadership progressive support for the bill.

Demand Progress, an influential internet rights group, slammed the decision to drop the amendment Wednesday.

“House leadership has chosen to advance a bill that fails to protect internet activity with a warrant, despite the express support of 61 Senators,” Sean Vitka, the group’s senior policy counsel, said in a statement.

“It would be unconscionable for the Democratic House to pass any PATRIOT Act reauthorization without critical privacy reforms that would pass the Senate.

–Jordain Carney contributed to this report, which was updated at 3:38 p.m.

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Exclusive– Congressman: Nancy Pelosi Blocking Investigation into Chinese Coronavirus Origins, Tax Money to Wuhan Lab

Posted by M. C. on May 4, 2020

Anthony Fauci’s NIAID was involved in funds going to the Wuhan lab.

Yet this epidemic centered at this lab was a big surprise. Why?

Power, money, big government wanting to control the plebs?

So are we back to everyone’s first guess-Bio-weapons research? How deep is Fauci’s involvement in bio-weapons?

Are you getting the feeling that anywhere there is a government funded lab researching cures-there are bio-weapons lurking in a dark corner?

https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020/05/03/congressman-nancy-pelosi-blocking-investigation-chinese-coronavirus-origins/

by Matthew Boyle

Appearing on Breitbart News Saturday on SiriusXM 125 the Patriot Channel, Reschenthaler discussed his efforts to investigate tax dollars that flowed through a New York firm to the Wuhan lab. He said that Pelosi and House Democrats are not interested in holding the Chinese Communist Party accountable and, instead, want to focus their oversight efforts on politically harming President Trump again just like they tried and failed with the partisan impeachment last year and earlier this year…

Reschenthaler wrote a letter this week to Secretary of Defense Mark Esper inquiring about a Pentagon grant to EcoHealth Alliance, Inc., a New York firm that has had a history of funding the Wuhan Institute of Virology with subgrants from American taxpayers. The Pentagon grant the congressman was inquiring about was for research into bat-borne zoonotic diseases and their potential as weapons of mass destruction or biological weapons. While it is unclear if that grant saw U.S. taxpayer money flowing from it out to the Wuhan lab, it is known that another grant that EcoHealth Alliance received did partially spend U.S. tax dollars in the Chinese lab….

That grant, from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) — in particular the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), which is run by the now-famous Dr. Anthony Fauci — saw U.S. tax dollars sent to EcoHealth Alliance for researching coronaviruses from bats flow out to the Chinese lab in Wuhan…

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