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  • John Boehner says he’s rooting against a nuke deal with Iran
    Posted April 17, 2015 at 3:05 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (17)

    House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Friday that when it comes to the Obama administration’s effort to finalize a nuclear agreement with Iran, failure is an option.

    Boehner told Fox Business’s Maria Bartiromo that he hopes no deal emerges in the next few months, because he doesn’t think Iran will ever implement any deal requiring substantive curbs on its nuclear program.

    U.S. House Speaker John Boehner, a Republican from Ohio, is sworn in during the first session of the 114th Congress in the House Chamber at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, Jan. 6, 2015. (Bloomberg/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

    House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Friday he hopes there is no final deal with Iran, because he doesn’t think Iran will stick to any agreement that’s reached. Bloomberg/Bloomberg via Getty Images

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  • Dreams of a balanced budget fading fast as Congress continues to pile on the debt
    Posted April 17, 2015 at 12:47 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

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    Members of the House and Senate will meet next week to negotiate a final budget plan for 2016, one that Republicans have touted as a path toward balancing the budget in 10 years or less.

    But that work has already been largely undone by Congress, which has passed one bill that would add billions of dollars in new debt and puts the goal of a budget surplus out of reach. Republicans in the House are also pursuing tax legislation that — while championed by many conservatives — would further add to the debt.

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  • Millions of dollars out the door in excess Obamacare subsidies — now the government is trying to get the money back
    Posted April 17, 2015 at 9:30 am by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (11)

    A government watchdog is reporting that more than 300,000 people have received hundreds of millions of dollars in excess subsidies to buy health insurance under Obamacare, and will have to return those extra payments.

    The Treasury Department’s Inspector General for Tax Administration reported that as of late February, the IRS had processed 737,148 tax returns from people who claimed a “premium tax credit” under Obamacare. Those credits are the way the law subsidizes low-income people who are required to buy health insurance.

    Screen Shot 2015-04-17 at 8.47.28 AM

    The Treasury Department’s Inspector General for Tax Administration reported that hundreds of thousands of people were paid too much in advance premium tax credits (APTCs) to buy insurance under Obamacare. Image: Treasury’s IG for Tax Administration.

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  • Life hack: Shuck corn on the cob in a way that’s so simple it’s crazy
    Posted April 16, 2015 at 4:43 pm by Mike Opelka

    Comments (60)

    With the arrival of spring, barbecue season is finally here for many. And for millions of Americans that means it’s time for grilling and corn on the cob.

    However, shucking the corn and removing the silk from each ear can be a hassle — until now.

    Presenting a super simple life hack for cooking and cleaning your corn on the cob:


    Follow Mike Opelka (@Stuntbrain) on Twitter.

  • Harry Reid threatens to force a Senate vote on Loretta Lynch
    Posted April 16, 2015 at 4:28 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (28)

    Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Thursday warned Republicans that if they don’t hold a vote soon on Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch, he’ll use a rare Senate procedure to force a vote on the long-stalled nominee.

    “I had a conversation today with a number of Republicans and told them really to get her done or I will make sure they will have an opportunity to vote against her,” Reid said in an interview on MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow Show that will air Thursday night.

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Democrat from Nevada, pauses while speaking during a news conference at the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2014. (Bloomberg/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

    Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said he would soon try to force a vote on stalled Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch if Republicans dont bring up that vote soon. Bloomberg/Bloomberg via Getty Images

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  • Report: House Transportation Committee chairman dating airline lobbyist
    Posted April 16, 2015 at 3:59 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

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    The Republican chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure is dating a lobbyist for the airline industry, although the couple seems to have made an attempt to ensure they don’t mix business and pleasure.

    According to a report in Politico, Chairman Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) is dating Shelley Rubino, a vice president for Airlines for America, and has been since last year. Shuster told Politico that they have a “private and personal relationship.”

    shuster

    House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) is reportedly dating an airline lobbyist, but says he is making sure the personal and business relationship stays separate. Image: House Transportation committee

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  • Pelosi: Hillary Clinton’s Iraq vote doesn’t disqualify her from becoming the Democratic nominee
    Posted April 16, 2015 at 1:58 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (7)

    House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Thursday that she doesn’t think Hillary Clinton’s 2002 vote in favor of the Iraq war should disqualify her from becoming the Democratic nominee for president in 2016.

    The question was asked because former Sen. Lincoln Chafee said he is exploring the Democratic nomination as well, and said anyone who voted in favor of the Iraq war should not be the Democratic nominee. “I do think it’s a disqualifier,” said Chafee, who was a Republican while he was in the Senate but is now a Democrat.

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  • There’s a theory about what drives the US economy that you hear all the time. This financial expert says it’s completely wrong. (Audio)
    Posted April 16, 2015 at 12:24 pm by Benjamin Weingarten

    Comments (65)

    If you listen to the news on the economy or financial markets, you have probably heard statements like “consumption drives the American economy,” or “consumption is 70% of the economy.”

    But in a new book out that follows in the footsteps of Henry Hazlitt’s classic “Economics in One Lesson” — though in a much more fun package — titled “Popular Economics: What the Rolling Stones, Downton Abbey, and LeBron James Can Teach You about Economics,” Forbes and RealClearMarkets Editor, and senior economic advisor to Toreador Research and Trading John Tamny challenges this and much other “conventional wisdom” on taxes, regulations, trade and money.

    In an in-depth interview with Mr. Tamny, I asked him in particular about the notion that consumption drives economic growth, to which he responded:

    “Consumption is zero percent of our economy. It’s always production.”
    Share:

    Consumption is zero percent of our economy. It’s always production.

    If you don’t believe that, decide one day that you’re just going to consume and do nothing else. If so, you will very quickly die an unclothed, unfed death.

    You must produce first in order to consume. And so it is production that drives the economy forward.

    And so, when you think about … economists love to say “We want everyone to consume, consume, consume.”

    Well how are we more productive?

    We’re productive precisely because people save, and their savings flow toward more productive ways to build cars, to manufacture computers.

    It is thanks to savings that we enjoy cell phones that we can watch tv on; that we increasingly have a good chance of winning the battle against cancer; that we get to drive cars that will at some point drive us around.

    That’s because of savings.

    Savings are what power the economy forward.

    Consumption is the easy part. We all want to consume. But saving is what allows us to eventually consume.

    During the interview, which you can listen to in full below, we also discussed several other topics including: (more…)

  • House votes 240-179 to eliminate the ‘death tax’
    Posted April 16, 2015 at 12:20 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (14)

    The House passed legislation Thursday to terminate the estate tax, in a vote that saw only seven Democrats join Republicans in defiance of President Barack Obama’s threat to veto the bill.

    The bill to end what the GOP calls the “death tax” was part of group of several tax-related bills that Republicans called up this week, just as millions of Americans were paying their income taxes. Several bills were passed Wednesday, including proposals aimed at stopping the IRS from injecting politics into decisions about whether certain groups should get tax-exempt status.

    Photo credit: Shutterstock

    Republicans on Thursday pushed through a bill to repeal the estate tax, which they say is making it impossible for people to hand down family farms to the next generation. Despite the House vote, President Obama has said he would veto the legislation. Photo credit: Shutterstock

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  • Here’s how one Democrat thinks people succeed in America: ‘Luck and, whatever, hard work’
    Posted April 16, 2015 at 11:17 am by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (6)

    Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.) said Thursday that luck is the biggest reason why people succeed in America, although he gave a sort of half-hearted nod to another possible reason.

    “America is a wonderful country,” he said. “We all have a chance to make it. Some make it better than others. That’s because luck and, whatever, hard work.”

    (AP)

    Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.) said Thursday that successful Americans are successful because of ‘luck and, whatever, hard work.’ Image: AP

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  • DHS hopes giving employees cash, awards will make DHS a better place to work
    Posted April 16, 2015 at 10:18 am by Pete Kasperowicz

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    After placing last on a list of large federal agencies that are the best places to work, the Department of Homeland Security is handing out awards and money to employees in an effort to boost morale, according to a top DHS official.

    The National Archives and Records Administration runs an annual poll among hundreds of thousands of federal workers to see where these workers are most happy. According to the 2014 survey, NASA was voted the best large agency for workers, followed by the Department of Commerce and the Department of State.

    Jeh Johnson was just named as Homeland Security Secretary. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

    Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson is hoping more money and more awards will help make DHS a better place to work. AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster

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  • ‘For the Record’ live blog: ‘Insider Attack’
    Posted April 15, 2015 at 4:01 pm by Steve Krakauer

    Comments (0)

    While you watch tonight’s season finale episode of “For the Record” about the deadliest insider attack of the Afghanistan War, join the conversation here with TheBlaze TV producers and reporters.

    The show starts at 8 p.m. ET:

  • Marco Rubio: America isn’t in decline, it just has a ‘bad president’
    Posted April 15, 2015 at 1:42 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (11)

    Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said Wednesday that America has a “bad president” in President Barack Obama, which could be leading some to mistakenly conclude that America’s power is fading.

    “America is not in decline, we just happen to have a period of time where we have a bad president, but we’re going to overcome that,” he said at the Heritage Foundation.

    Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., attends a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the nomination of Victoria Nuland to be assistant secretary of State for European and Eurasian affairs, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, July 11, 2013. Credit: AP

    Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said Wednesday that the United States needs to overcome having a ‘bad president.’ Image: AP

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  • Government watchdog confirms most allegations about broken VA office in Philadelphia
    Posted April 15, 2015 at 12:41 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (0)

    The Department of Veterans Affairs’ Office of Inspector General released a long-awaited report that officially confirms VA officials in Philadelphia purposefully manipulated the wait times of veterans seeking health care, and makes dozens recommendations on how to improve service to these veterans.

    Much of the contents of the report have been known for weeks, such as the 35 specific recommendations the OIG made to improve the troubled Philadelphia office. Still, the report is likely to once again shine a light on the seemingly endless failures of the VA nationwide, as well as Veterans Affairs regional offices, or VAROs, that have exhibited systemic problems.

    va3

    The Department of Veterans Affairs’ Office of Inspector General substantiated most of the allegations about corrupt and negligent officials in Philadelphia.

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  • Abortion fight continues to tie up the Senate, delay Lynch confirmation
    Posted April 15, 2015 at 10:17 am by Pete Kasperowicz

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    Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) indicated Wednesday morning that Democrats would reject the latest Republican proposal to reach a deal on anti-abortion language that has prevented passage of a bill to help victims of human trafficking.

    Rejecting the GOP’s latest proposal would not only delay that bill, but it is also expected to delay consideration of Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch. Senate Republicans have said they won’t move to a vote on Lynch until the Senate finishes work on the trafficking bill.

    Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn, of Texas, center, pauses during a news conference following a Republican luncheon on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, July 8, 2014. Joining Cornyn are, from left, Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wy., and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) AP Photo/Susan Walsh

    Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn (R-Texas) offered a new proposal to end a fight over abortion language in the Senate, but Democrats indicated they still don’t support it. Image: AP Photo/Susan Walsh

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  • Harry Reid didn’t hold back when talking about the GOP field for 2016
    Posted April 15, 2015 at 8:54 am by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (85)

    The entire field of Republican presidential candidates running for the White House in 2016 is comprised of “losers,” according to Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).

    Reid is famous for the mean-spirited, unforgiving lines he uses against his political opponents, and he played to type in an interview with CNBC that aired Wednesday. When asked what he thinks about the GOP presidential field, he said:

    “I don’t really care. I think they’re all losers.”

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  • What the media did when Hillary Clinton arrived at an event in Iowa even left an MSNBC anchor surprised: ‘Wow!’
    Posted April 14, 2015 at 3:10 pm by Mike Opelka

    Comments (92)

    Hillary Clinton, the Democrats’ only announced presidential candidate, arrived in Iowa Tuesday. A gaggle of reporters and photographers assembled in front of the Jones Regional Educational Center in Monticello, Iowa, where where she was set to speak. But when she threw them a curveball, even an MSNBC anchor was left playfully stunned.

    MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts tossed to Alex Seitz-Wald, who was covering the event for the network. As Seitz-Wald was reporting, Clinton’s van passed the front entrance and headed for the back of the building. The media members were initially all set up for her to arrive at the front. And that’s when the magic happened.

    Watch Seitz-Wald held his position as the rest of the press corps scurried, literally running, to get to the back of the building.

    Roberts was left exclaiming “wow” several times:

    The crew at the Washington Free Beacon took the video and produced this clever homage to the classic British comedy from Benny Hill:

    __

    Follow Mike Opelka (@Stuntbrain) on Twitter.

  • A Blaze Books exclusive excerpt from a sci-fi novel at the front line of the culture wars
    Posted April 14, 2015 at 11:37 am by Benjamin Weingarten

    Comments (1)

    Recently we featured an exclusive excerpt from Roy Griffis’ “The Big Bang,” the product of Liberty Island, a publishing house created by longtime industry executive Adam Bellow to help independent authors see their conservative and libertarian-themed fiction titles come to life. More on Liberty Island and its role in the conservative countercultural movement here.

    Today we bring you another exclusive excerpt from an intriguing book out of Liberty Island written by author Frank Fleming titled “Superego.” “Superego” is a science fiction novel centered on a genetically engineered psychopath working to save the world. Allow Fleming to tell you a bit about it below:

    Following in the footsteps of Fleming’s other works including “Punch Your Inner Hippie: Cut Your Hair, Get a Job, and Make America Awesome Again,” ”How to Fix Everything in America Forever: The Plan to Keep America Awesome” and “Obama: The Greatest President in the History of Everything,” the Pajamas Media columnist and founder of imao.us mixes satire and a sharp wit in his dark but humorous fictional debut.

    Check out an excerpt from “Superego” below.

    [A] lot of people consider thinking a giant killer robot is a god to be…ridiculous…I get that
    Share:

    Five sentients were firing energy weapons with crazed zeal, screaming something about a mechanized god. People around me fell, dead or wounded. I was right at the center of a terrorist attack. What were the chances?

    Not very high is the answer. But that was not my main concern at the moment.

    I was familiar with this group. They called themselves the Calabrai. Knowledge of the existence of other sentient species has been a problem for many religions, as most were formed before people even considered the possibility of life on other worlds (or knew that there were other worlds). Thus each religion is mostly confined to the particular species and home world of its origin, and adaptation to the new reality was hard. The Calabrai basically took religions from many different species — one “true” religion from each — and considered them all as having been based on the same true god. This one true god supposedly took form as a gigantic city-leveling robot called Calab. Calab is hidden on some unknown planet (though he is rumored to have been destroyed), and he keeps sending out commands to his followers to kill unbelievers.

    There are a lot of obvious problems with giving this kind of robot artificial intelligence, but you can hardly blame people for failing to consider that it might become the basis for a violent new cult. And the Calabrai do follow its commands, though their efforts to kill the unbelievers never seem to amount to much more than huge annoyances to the targeted planets, as they aren’t a sophisticated enough force to topple governments. It made sense that they’d be interested in the expansion of powers of the Galactic Alliance and would attack Nar Valdum now, as one of the initial reasons most civilizations exist is to keep kill-happy barbarians at bay.

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    I try to avoid religious disputes. Well, I try to avoid people most of the time, but I especially have no interest in debating religion. One can point out that religion is just a bunch of superstitious, irrational beliefs; but is that any different from the beliefs of atheists? Everyone likes to think they’re logical and reasonable, but I find all people to be equally absurd and irrational. The main difference is that the religious tend to be a bit more organized in their irrationality. (more…)

  • John Boehner: Nothing ‘concrete’ in Obama’s nuke deal with Iran, just a deal to ‘keep talking’
    Posted April 14, 2015 at 10:58 am by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (2)

    House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Tuesday that he doesn’t think the Obama administration made any real progress toward reaching a nuclear agreement with Iran, and said the tentative deal announced on April 2 was nothing more than an agreement to keep negotiating until June.

    “From everything I’ve heard of the so-called framework, all it is is really an agreement to keep talking,” Boehner told reporters. “I haven’t seen anything concrete come out of this yet.”

    Screen Shot 2015-04-14 at 10.49.31 AM

    House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) indicated Tuesday that he thinks the tentative Iran nuclear deal is an empty vessel, and that Congress should approve it instead of trusting the Obama administration to assess and implement it. Image: AP

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  • Government watchdog: FBI, DEA violated the law by blocking investigation into sexual harassment cases
    Posted April 14, 2015 at 9:52 am by Pete Kasperowicz

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    The FBI and other branches of the Justice Department are completely ignoring a recently passed law that requires them to comply with investigations by the department’s Office of Inspector General, the OIG told Congress on Tuesday.

    Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz was due to testify Tuesday morning before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, just a few weeks after the OIG released a report saying Drug Enforcement Agencies routinely held “sex parties” in Colombia with prostitutes hired by local drug cartels. That report outlined several other problems related to sexual harassment, including problems that various agencies have reporting these incidents up the chain of command.

     (Photo by Matthew J. Lee/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

    The FBI and other agencies under the Department of Justice were called out Tuesday for violating a law that requires them to cooperate with Inspector General investigations. Matthew J. Lee/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

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  • Hillary’s server: It’s not just about her hiding things from the American people
    Posted April 13, 2015 at 3:01 pm by Chris Salcedo

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    The very weekend that Hillary Clinton announced her second run for the White House, revelations have shed light on a little-talked about consequence of Clinton’s efforts to hide her mistakes from “We the People.”

    Richard Miniter, president of the American Media Institute, joined The Chris Salcedo Show this weekend to reveal the results an investigation AMI conducted. Miniter outlined interviews with intelligence officials, including some Democrats, who are concerned and even livid about Clinton’s use of a private server to conduct government business. The intelligence community worries about thousands of attempts made daily to breach American cybersecurity and points out that billions of taxpayer dollars are spent protecting America’s government from incursions by rogue states like China, Russia and Iran. Clinton’s server was provided by a commercial Internet service provider that could not approach the level of security offered to official government accounts. Not only do officials stress over foreign enemies gathering intelligence off the server, they also fret that they could have changed official documents that would have provided false data that caused then-Secretary of State Clinton to act on faulty information.

    To hear real investigative journalism, something the Brian Williams Press forgets how to do during Democratic administrations, cue to 1:35:35:

  • More ‘concerns’ from State Dept., this time over Russia’s sale of missiles to Iran
    Posted April 13, 2015 at 2:30 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (5)

    Secretary of State John Kerry on Monday expressed his “concerns” that Russia has agreed to ship Iran a missile system capable of hitting targets 125 miles away, according to Acting State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf.

    But Harf gave no indication that Kerry said anything more than that.

    U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, shakes hands with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov before the start of their meeting at the Russian Ambassador's residence about the situation in Ukraine, in Paris Sunday March 30, 2014. Kerry traveled to Paris for a last minute meeting with Lavrov. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, Pool) AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, Pool

    U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, shakes hands with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov before a meeting on Ukraine last month. On Monday, the two spoke by phone, and Kerry said the U.S. had ‘concerns’ about the sale of missiles to Iran. Image: AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

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  • Legal immigration poised to add the equivalent of seven major U.S. cities to the population
    Posted April 13, 2015 at 1:15 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (4)

    The United States is on pace to legally admit 10 million immigrants over the next decade, an amount equal to the current populations of Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Los Angeles and St. Louis combined, according to Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.).

    And that’s just legal immigration, which doesn’t count the addition of illegal immigrants, including those who might be drawn by the promise of a further relaxation of U.S. immigration laws.

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    Image: Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.)

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  • LISTEN: A leading national security advisor and Islamic law expert explains how and why America is losing to jihadists
    Posted April 13, 2015 at 11:10 am by Benjamin Weingarten

    Comments (8)

    Major Stephen Coughlin (Ret.), a decorated intelligence officer known as the Pentagon’s leading expert on Islamic law has authored a forthcoming book, “Catastrophic Failure: Blindfolding America in the Face of the Jihad,” that serves as a damning indictment of America’s national security establishment in the face of the global jihad, and provides a chilling message to the American people.

    We had the opportunity to discuss Coughlin’s new book in a wide-ranging interview that you can find below.

    During our discussion, Coughlin goes into great depth on the thesis of his book, providing keen insights into the nature and doctrinal basis of the threat posed by Islamic supremacists, America’s conscious purging of the very lexicon necessary to describe the nature of the threat on its own terms, and as a result of postmodernism, political correctness and the pervasiveness of what Coughlin describes as culturally Marxist narratives — along with the gentle prodding of Muslim Brotherhood influences on our media and other core institutions — the ignorance, incoherence and willful blindness of America’s “stupid” national security establishment.

    The end result that Coughlin sees is a completely compromised security situation in which America is able to win in military engagements, while completely losing — to the degree to which it is even fighting — on the ideological warfare battleground where the Muslim Brotherhood and its Western proxies devote a significant amount of their efforts.

    This civilizational jihad effort, and Western ignorance of principles like jihad, abrogation and dawah, which Coughlin describes during our interview, evidences itself in everything from what Coughlin sees as the disastrous policy of Countering Violent Extremism (CVE), to the Fort Hood shooting, to Iranian nuclear negotiations, which we examine through the lens of the 7th century Treaty of Hudaybiyyah.

    Below are several of the more critical portions of our interview, but for those concerned about the state of national security as it relates to the global jihad, we urge you to listen to the conversation in full.

    The Three Words the National Security Establishment Won’t Use Essential to Understanding the Enemy

    How the Muslim Brotherhood is Working Its Way Towards Civilizational Jihad in America

    How CVE Supports the Postmodernist Narrative, and Deems Veterans Returning from War a Threat

    The Derelection of Duty of America’s National Security Establishment (more…)
  • Here’s the line from 2008 that Rand Paul says spells big trouble for Hillary Clinton
    Posted April 13, 2015 at 9:05 am by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (200)

    Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) predicted on Sunday that one of Hillary Clinton’s biggest hurdles to winning the White House in 2016 will be one of her most famous lines from her 2008 campaign — the one about being ready to handle an international crisis in the middle of the night.

    “I think precisely what some will say is her strength is actually her weakness: her tenure as secretary of state,” Paul said on CBS. “There’s one thing that people want as commander in chief: they want someone who will defend the country.”

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