Politics

The Psychology of Climate Change

By on 7.17.14 | 10:54AM

"The Population Bomb: While You Are Reading These Words Four People Will Have Died of Starvation, Most of Them Children,” read the title of Paul R. Ehrlich’s 1968 book. In 1975, Newsweek’s Peter Gwynne wrote an article called “The Cooling World,” which argued that the earth was cooling and “the resulting famines could be catastrophic.” These days, you can’t drop your child off at pre-school or go to the grocery store without hearing about the latest Malthusian uproar, climate change.  

The doomsayers have run into no trouble reaching the otherwise tone-deaf executive branch. Yesterday, President Obama said, "climate change poses a direct threat to the infrastructure of America," before unleashing a number of new climate change initiatives.

To be clear, it does seem like the earth is warming and that human beings have an effect on it. That much is apparent. But the rate at which the earth is warming, the amount of influence that humans have on the climate, and the proper solutions are certainly up for debate.

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Politics

Showdown in Las Vegas

By 7.17.14

The letter was polite. A simple request for dialogue — a “productive conversation” — with the NAACP at its upcoming 105th convention in Las Vegas. Dialogue between black conservatives and representatives of the historic group that was once a beacon in the fight for civil rights.

The March letter went to Lorraine C. Miller, the interim president of the group, and was signed by Deneen Borelli, the prominent black conservative, on behalf of empower.org and FreedomWorks. Borelli cited the national black unemployment rate in February (12 percent) and noted it was double that for whites. The unemployment rate for black teens between ages 16 and 19 — a particularly mindboggling set of statistic, 32.4 percent — was cited. Last but not least was the drop in black homeownership from 50 percent to 43 percent, a sharp contrast to a rise of 73 percent in white homeownership.

The suggestion was made to have a panel on economic empowerment with representatives of the NAACP and a group of black conservatives including Borelli and the Reverend C.L. Bryant. Along with the inevitable booth, a staple of these kind of gatherings.

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Darrell Issa, Subpoenas, and Political Theater

By on 7.16.14 | 4:06PM

Congressman Darrell Issa, the chairman of the House Oversight Committee, issued a subpoena to White House senior adviser David Simas, compelling him to testify at a Wednesday morning hearing exhaustively titled, “White House Office of Political Affairs: Is Supporting Candidates and Campaign Fund-Raising an Appropriate Use of a Government Office?”

White House counsel Neil Eggleston pushed back against the subpoena in a letter, describing it as a violation of the separation of powers, as it “threatens longstanding interests of the executive branch in preserving the president’s independence and autonomy, as well as his ability to obtain candid advice and counsel to aid him in the discharge of his duties,” the Washington Post reported. Issa insisted the subpoena remain in place.

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God Bless the IRS

By on 7.16.14 | 1:27PM

In a series of releases from the House Oversight Committee last night, Chairman Darrell Issa released new information in the ongoing investigation of the IRS. The revelations deal with Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis. According to a YouTube video released here, the recording is of Solis soliciting funds for President Obama’s reelection campaign. Federal law, under the Hatch Act, prohibits federal officials and bureaucrats from campaigning during work time. Issa is alleging that these calls were made on federal time, which is a clear violation of the act. 

In another allegation, this one from the Federal Election Commission (FEC), Issa points to several tweets from an April Sands, who was Lerner’s deputy before resigning earlier this year. One of the tweets, posted on Issa’s Twitter page, shows Sands attacking Mitt Romney on federal time:

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Rove American Crossroads in Mississippi Controversy

By on 7.16.14 | 8:00AM

The headline in the Washington Post on June 4 was clear:

Rove-backed American Crossroads won’t get involved in Cochran runoff

Said the Post story the day after Tea Party favorite Chris McDaniel had defeated six-term Mississippi GOP Senator Thad Cochran in the first round of the state’s GOP primary:

American Crossroads, a GOP establishment organization, has decided to shift its political focus almost entirely to the general election and will not be spending money in the likely runoff election to decide the Mississippi Senate nomination that was virtually deadlocked after Tuesday night. […]

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A Woman’s Right to Choose

By on 7.15.14 | 5:34PM

In the course of my journalistic wanderings, I met a woman who gave up a dream of becoming a medical researcher to marry a farmer and have ten children. She not only homeschools them all, but also teaches a theological course for local teenagers at her kitchen table. And she enjoys it:

“I didn’t realize just how important motherhood is until I became a mother,” she told me at the Deseret News. “I think motherhood is the answer to changing the world instead of what I thought I was going to do.”

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Tonight’s Two Runoffs

By on 7.15.14 | 4:57PM

After several weeks with little election news, two House primaries are being held today, one in Alabama and one in North Carolina. In both races, the leading candidates failed to reach the necessary vote threshold to avoid a runoff. In Alabama, both State Representative Paul DeMarco and Gary Peters are vying for a seat, while in North Carolina Phil Berger Jr. and Mark Walker are in contention. Both seats are open as both incumbents retired.

Alabama

In Alabama, both DeMarco and Peters have long histories in politics. DeMarco has been in the state house for the past nine years. Peters is the founder of the conservative think tank Alabama Policy Institute. Running to replace retiring Congressman Spencer Bachus, both men are making last-second pushes for votes. DeMarco came in the heavy favorite after the primary with 32.7 percent to Palmer’s 19.7 percent. While DeMarco seems to have the advantage, Palmer is trying to consolidate support from his primary opponents’ voters.

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The Dead in Gaza

By on 7.15.14 | 10:44AM

War is hell, not just for the soldiers, but also for those caught in the crossfire, the puppets and victims. The noncombatants of Gaza are bearing the brunt of the violence and bombings of the last week. They are cornered between Hamas, which has not hesitated to use them as human shields, firing rockets from within civilian neighborhoods and buildings, and Israel, which, although it tries to forewarn nonmilitants of attacks, remains relentless in its bombardment of Hamas’s rocket launch sites. The result for the people of Gaza: some 174 dead and thousands of refugees. 

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History

Cesar Chavez: Anti-Immigration to His Union Core

By 7.15.14

Call it the whitewash of Cesar Chavez. Yes, that Cesar Chavez: the late farm worker unionizer (he died in 1993) honored repeatedly by President Obama. The man the Left loves to name drop for his role in organizing all-those grape and lettuce and melon pickers in the day.

But there is a considerable twist to the story. In fact, Cesar Chavez believed ferociously in the border of the United States — because that border protected his union. So ferociously did he hold this view that the New York Times ran a story detailing an accusation that the union Chavez founded, the United Farm Workers, set up a 100 mile “wet line” to keep “wetbacks” and “illegals” — yes, all of those are Chavez’s words — out of the United States. So let’s go back in the time machine to the period when Chavez was rocketing to fame.

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Political Hay

No U-Turns

By 7.15.14

The Netflix documentary Mitt ought to be required viewing for American voters, and particularly the low-information types who cast their ballots for Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election. Mitt chronicles the 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns of former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, and in it one can see the effects a long and grueling presidential campaign can have on a candidate and his family.

One can also see the chasm between who a man really is and what he’s portrayed to be by his political opponents and the media. The Romney in Mitt is a man America would happily choose as its president: successful in business, faithful to God, blessed with family, easygoing with friends, and possessed of the intelligence and skill to serve in a high executive role. He’s funny and down to earth. The Romney clan is straight out of a Norman Rockwell painting.

He’s a man you can root for.

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