Just a quick response to Aaron Goldstein's piece on Roger Waters, the doddering rocker formerly of Pink Floyd. Waters's criticism of Israel strikes me as bizarre and wrongheaded, but not, pace Aaron, necessarily "anti-Semitic." Anti-Semite is not an epithet to be tossed at one's political opponents. I do not see enough evidence to suggest that Waters, however crudely he chooses to express his disagreements with Israeli foreign and domestic policy, actually hates Jewish people. Besides, it is a bit rich to find someone who refers monolithically to "the Palestinians" (cf. "the blacks"), as if every single Palestinian shared the disgusting opinions of certain propagandists and P.A. higher-ups, making accusations of racism.
The Spectacle Blog
The Federal Reserve Board of Governors announced today that they would begin a taper of monthly bond purchases made as part of quantitative easing policy. The taper, or reduction, is slight—a decrease in monthly asset purchases from $85 billion to $75 billion, or a little more than 10 percent, which would begin in January.
While some analysts did not expect the Federal Reserve to taper any time in the near future, there were hints in Janet Yellen’s testimony before the Senate Banking Committee last month that the Fed was pleased with progress they perceived in the economic indicators they used to determine whether to scale back on asset purchases. Recent jobs numbers were probably one of the major indicators the Fed relied upon in their decision.
One of the funniest political pundits on television or in writing, Fox News' Greg Gutfeld, will be the keynote speaker at the 2014 Independence Institute Founders' Night Dinner on March 6, 2014 in Denver.
Gutfeld is irreverent, incisive, and increasingly influential. Those who see him on Fox's programs "The Five" or "Red Eye," which he hosts, would not be surprised that the sub-title of Gutfeld's web site is "A handkerchief of hard news soaked in a sneeze of thought snot."
Tickets are on sale now, and prices will go up after December 31st, so if you are near Denver (or can be on March 6th) I encourage you to buy today, before you forget.
I'll see you there!
- Study Looks at Marijuana Demand in Washington
- Federal Judge to Hear Ohio Gay Marriage Fight
- 1st Navy Bribery Conviction May Bring Wider Probe
On Monday at 2 pm, The American Spectator hosted a tweet-up with Nansen Malin, who currently works as the Washington State Director for Americans for Prosperity. She has held prominent positions in Washington State politics and nationally is one of the most followed conservatives on Twitter, with over 600,000 followers.
Here’s what we learned from our Twitter discussion with @nansen about what the Affordable Care Act means for Americans.
Less access, longer waits:
Jeff Sessions promised to filibuster and Republican support was slow to emerge, leading columnists like Marc Thiessen to wonder if the Ryan-Murray murmur of a budget deal might die in the Senate. Not even close:
Twelve Senate Republicans joined all 55 Democrats and Independents on Tuesday to advance the bipartisan budget deal approved in a landslide House vote last week. President Obama also supports the measure.
The list of the Republican aisle-crossers contains the usual suspects along with a couple surprises:
On Monday night (at the urging of my roomie Christopher) I saw a sneak preview of Inside Llewyn Davis which opens up nationwide on Friday. Inside Llewyn Davis, starring Oscar Isaac in the title role, is a fictional account of the folk music scene in Greenwich Village circa 1961.
If you are having a miserable day then I would advise against seeing Inside Llewyn Davis because you will leave the theater feeling much worse than when you came in. But what can one expect from the Coen Brothers who also brought you No Country for Old Men?
Yesterday United States District Judge Richard Leon found that the NSA’s collection of telephone records is likely unconstitutional.
As Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) told reporters, “It is an astounding day when a federal judge says a government surveillance practice would leave James Madison aghast […] The idea of collecting all these phone records is not inoffensive data collection as some of the proponents have said. It is digital surveillance."
This is big news on the heels of 60 Minutes NSA hagiography.
We’re moving in the right direction. A federal court outright rejected a NATIONAL SECURITY DIRECTIVE [!!!] to gather information on nearly all telephone calls made to, from, and within the United States. Simply put, this is an important reminder that “big government doesn’t just make you buy health care, etc.” So where to from here?
After a long and brilliant career, Phyllis Schlafly has taken a terribly wrong turn.
Throughout her career she has accomplished so much good. But today, she stands firmly on the side of a huge, unfettered, unconstitutional federal leviathan, along with the icon of the pro-abortion movement, the late Chief Justice Warren Burger.
It makes sense that someone like Burger, who gave us Roe v. Wade, might oppose efforts to restrain a corrupt federal government. However, Schlafly’s opposition is a baffling deviation from her lifetime of activism. Based on a single letter from this activist justice, Phyllis Schlafly stands against the American people and their right and obligation to act to restrain the federal government through an Article V amending convention.