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  • White House asks Congress to limit its military options in Iraq
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 5:07 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (1)

    House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) on Friday accused the Obama administration of trying to limit its military options in Iraq even as an offshoot group of Al Qaeda is gaining strength in that country and threatening U.S. interests.

    McKeon was reacting to a letter hat National Security Advisor Susan Rice sent to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) on Friday. It was sent just before the House considered a resolution calling on President Barack Obama to consult with Congress before sending troops back to Iraq to mitigate the rise of the terrorist group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.

    President Barack Obama ‘s national security advisor asked Congress on Friday to terminate authorization to use military force in Iraq. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)

    Rice told Boehner that Obama has repeatedly said he has no intention to return to combat operations in Iraq, but has also said targeted military action may be needed. In that case, she said Obama would consult with Congress.

    Instead of passing the resolution, Rice suggested that the House pass legislation ending the 2002 Authorization for the Use of Military Force in Iraq.

    “With American combat troops having completed their withdrawal from Iraq on December 8, 2011, the Iraq AUMF is no longer used for any U.S. government activities and the administration fully supports its repeal,” she wrote.

    “Such a repeal would go much further in giving the American people confidence that groups forces will not be sent into combat in Iraq.”

    McKeon blasted that letter as a sign the administration wants to do nothing to stop the rise of ISIS, which the administration itself has said poses a danger to the United States.

    “Obama Administration officials are warning us daily that the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria is ‘worse than Al Qaeda’ and an extreme threat to the American people,” McKeon said. “The American people aren’t worried that the President will send the military back to Iraq. They’re worried about a deadly terrorist state that can hit us from Wall Street to Main Street.

    “They’re worried that this president refuses to do anything, at anytime, in any way, to stop the flood of national security crises that are popping up around the globe.”

    McKeon asked why Rice was asking Congress to pass legislation that would confirm to Americans that “the president will not confront a clear and present danger” to the country.

    “Where is her plan to stop this looming threat?” he asked. “Where is her request for additional intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance assets to monitor the situation? Why isn’t she over here, building support to stop a common enemy?

    “This isn’t just absurd. We’re past absurd. This is dangerous. This administration is fiddling while the world burns, and now they’re demanding Congress play with them.”

    Read Rice’s letter to Boehner here:

  • Dem senator walks back comment that PTSD caused him to plagiarize
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 3:58 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (1)

    Sen. John Walsh (D-Mont.) on Friday walked back his previous comments in which he appeared to blame Post Traumatic Stress Disorder for plagiarism that was recently discovered when he was at the U.S. Army War College.

    The New York Times reported Wednesday that the paper Walsh wrote while at the Army War College includes several passages from academic papers and other sources.

    Sen. John Walsh, D-Mont., right, said Friday that he should not have blamed his plagiarism on PTSD. (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke, File)

    (more…)

  • Traditional values under attack
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 3:56 pm by Stu Burguiere

    Comments (3)

    Certainly, the fundamental transformation of America started long before Barack Obama became president (see: Woodrow Wilson, FDR, et al).

    Today on Pat & Stu we talked with Todd Starnes from Fox News whose new book, “God Less America,” details in a humorous way the way Christianity and American values are under attack in this country.

    Hear Todd (and his “dude on dude slobber knocker” reference) beginning at the 46:10 mark:

  • See the list of items the Israel Defense Forces have asked Mercury One to supply
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 3:19 pm by Meg Storm

    Comments (2)

    On radio Friday morning, Glenn discussed the work Mercury One is doing to aid the Israeli people during this time of conflict. Mercury One is now working directly with the Israel Defense Forces  via the Israel Support Fund to provide the supplies they need to keep the men and women fighting safe.

    “We have a list of things that the Israelis have asked us for,” Glenn said. “It’s like socks and undershirts and hats and things like that. Flashlights that they really need. Mercury One is prepared to ship it all over. If you want to give to Mercury One and support the IDF and support those in Israel, you can do that. Every dollar raised goes right to this fund. You can do it now at MercuryOne.org.”

    Below is a list of what has been requested:

    - 100 Leatherman Supertool pliers @ $112/each = $11,200.00

    - 500 sets of 2 underwear, socks, and undershirt @ $8/each = $4,000

    - Army Field Intelligence: 350 hats and shirts – $9/each = $3,150

    - KFIR Brigade: 500 Hats for soldiers in extreme heat all day @ $5/each = $2,500

    - Nahal Special Forces: 200 head flashlights @ $11/each = $2,200

    - Nahal Special Forces: 15 Coffee Maker sets for the soldiers in the field @ $35/each – $525

    - Fallen Soldier Identification Unit: 200 sets of 2 underwear, socks, and undershirt @ $8/each = $1,600

    - 82 Tank Brigade – 200 head flashlights @ $11/each = $2,200

    - Unit 427 Special Forces: 150 head flashlights @ $11/each = $1650

    - 8100 Field Intelligence: 100 shirts and hats @ $9/each  = $900

    - Golani 13 (the hardest hit unit so far): 500 head flashlights @ $11/each = $5,500

    - Golani 13: 100 bullet proof vest bags @ $42/each = $4,200

    - Golani 12: 500 head flashlights @ $42/each = $4,200

    - Navy Seals 13 – 200 Leatherman Pliers Supertool @ $112.00/each (these are a different type of Leatherman) = $22,400

    - Navy Seals 13: 200 Special Head Flashlights @ $45/each = $9,000

    TOTAL PRICE = $75,225

    You can learn more about the Mercury One Israel Support Fund here.

  • Veterans groups oppose Obama’s $17.6 billion VA request
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 2:06 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

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    Key veterans organizations on Friday said they oppose President Barack Obama’s request for $17.6 billion in new funding for the Department of Veterans Affairs as something that will distract from efforts to reform the broken agency.

    Representatives of the American Legion, American Veterans and Concerned Veterans for America released a joint statement that said the request for more money is a last-minute request that is making it more difficult for the House and Senate to negotiate a final VA reform bill.

    Acting Veteran Affairs Secretary Sloan Gibson has said he needs billions more to fix the health care crisis at the VA, but Republicans say it’s unclear how the money would be spent, and key veterans groups came out against the request on Friday. Alex Wong/Getty Images

    (more…)

  • The first accident at this intersection is stunning. The second will leave you speechless.
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 1:48 pm by Liz Klimas

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    This could be one of the most dangerous intersections in the world.

    First, a scooter barely paused before zooming out into oncoming traffic where it was hit and run over by not one but two speeding cars.

    Image source: YouTube

    Image source: YouTube

    Then, a person, standing on the opposite side of the road with what appeared to be a bike carrying a cart with a full load, crossed the road to investigate the status of the scooter’s driver. As the traffic pattern had changed, this person was narrowly missed by other cars zipping by, but seemed to make it to the median unscathed. That was until a left-turning truck careened directly into them.

    Image source: YouTube

    Image source: YouTube

    Watch the stunning double accident:

    It is unclear when or where exactly this incident happened, but the footage has been making its rounds on the Web this week.

  • The great ice cream sandwich experiment
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 1:31 pm by Stu Burguiere

    Comments (4)

    This story is a travesty. It’s a sham. And it’s a mockery. It’s a traveshamockery.

    As TheBlaze points out, there are problems with WCPO’s “experiment” involving the story of mom who found her son’s ice cream sandwich wouldn’t melt. But the most glaring is that they disregard the fact that Christie Watson found the original sandwich after it was left overnight in the cool 60-degree Cincinnati breeze.

    Should the ice cream sandwich have melted anyway in that temperature? Sure, but WCPO should have been consistent. They conducted their recreation in the scorching sun for 30 minutes. We decided to do our own flawed ice cream sandwich experiment on the radio show today. For science, of course. See what happened:

  • House to Obama: No combat troops in Iraq without permission from Congress
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 12:52 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (3)

    The House overwhelmingly approved a resolution Friday that says President Barack Obama cannot deploy combat troops to Iraq without first getting approval and backing from Congress.

    Passage of the resolution in a 370-40 vote is an important signal to the White House that the House insists it must be consulted — Obama has told Congress he already has authorization from Congress passed more than a decade ago to send troops to Iraq if needed.

    President Barack Obama’s military advisers are weighing options in Iraq. The House passed a resolution Friday calling on Obama to seek permission before new combat troops are deployed. (AP Photo)

    (more…)

  • House committee slaps White House for ignoring subpoena
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 11:50 am by Pete Kasperowicz

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    The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on Friday passed a resolution rejecting an assertion that the top White House political official is immune from testifying before Congress.

    Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) issued a subpoena earlier this month to hear testimony from David Simas, director of the White House Office of Political Strategy and Outreach. Issa has said Simas is heading an office similar to past White House offices that have run afoul of a law prohibiting political activities on government time. (more…)

  • The one passage on the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict that the mainstream media will never print
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 10:40 am by Benjamin Weingarten

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    Lost in most all of the media’s coverage of the conflict in Gaza, and more broadly the battle between Israel and the Arab world is a candid discussion of the history of Israel’s founding and specifically what happened to the Arabs of Palestine at the time of its founding.

    Shmuel Katz, a South African native who emigrated to Israel in the 1930s, served in the Irgun and later held a seat in Israel’s First Knesset wrote at length about this very topic in his 1973 title “Battleground: Fact & Fantasy in Palestine.” And he asserts something that would enrage today’s mainstream media and undermine a crucial element to their narrative on the conflict: that the notion that Arabs were forcibly displaced from Palestine and made refugees is a farce.

    Proclamation of Nationhood is read by Israel's Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion. Around him are members of the provisional government, including Foreign Minister Moshe Shertok (third from right). Labor Minister Moshe Ben Tov (extreme right) wears sport shirt. Portrait above is of Theodor Herzl, Zionism's founder. (Image Source: Frank Scherschel—Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images)

    Proclamation of Nationhood is read by Israel’s Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion. Around him are members of the provisional government, including Foreign Minister Moshe Shertok (third from right). Labor Minister Moshe Ben Tov (extreme right) wears sport shirt. Portrait above is of Theodor Herzl, Zionism’s founder. (Image Source: Frank Scherschel—Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images)

    Katz makes his argument largely based upon the words of the Western media and Arab leaders themselves during the time of Israel’s founding. Below is the relevant passage:

    The Arabs are the only declared refugees who became refugees not by the action of their enemies or because of well-grounded fear of their enemies, but by the initiative of their own leaders. For nearly a generation, those leaders have willfully kept as many people as they possibly could in degenerating squalor, preventing their rehabilitation, and holding out to all of them the hope of return and of “vengeance” on the Jews of Israel, to whom they have transferred the blame for their plight.

    “The Arabs are the only declared refugees who became refugees..by the initiative of their own leaders”
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    The fabrication can probably most easily be seen in the simple circumstance that at the time the alleged cruel expulsion of Arabs by Zionists was in progress, it passed unnoticed. Foreign newspapermen who covered the war of 1948 on both sides did, indeed, write about the flight of the Arabs, but even those most hostile to the Jews saw nothing to suggest that it was not voluntary.

    In the three months during which the major part of the flight took place – April, May, and June 1948 – the London Times, at that time [openly] hostile to Zionism, published eleven leading articles on the situation in Palestine in addition to extensive news reports and articles. In none was there even a hint of the charge that the Zionists were, driving the Arabs from their homes.

    More interesting still, no Arab spokesman mentioned the subject. At the height of the flight, on April 27, Jamat Husseini, the Palestine Arabs’ chief representative at the United Nations, made a long political statement, which was not lacking in hostility toward the Zionists; he did not mention refugees. Three weeks later (while the flight was still in progress), the Secretary General of the Arab League, Azzam Pasha, made a fiercely worded political statement on Palestine; it contained not a word about refugees.

    The Arab refugees were not driven from Palestine by anyone. The vast majority left, whether of their own free will or at the orders or exhortations of their leaders, always with the same reassurance that their departure would help in the war against Israel. Attacks by Palestinian Arabs on the Jews had begun two days after the United Nations adopted its decision of November 29, 1947, to divide western Palestine into an Arab and a Jewish state. The seven neighboring Arab states Syria, Lebanon, Transjordan, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, and Egypt then prepared to invade the country as soon as the birth of the infant State of Israel was announced.

    “The Arab refugees were not driven from Palestine by anyone”
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    Their victory was certain, they claimed, but it would be speeded and made easier if the local Arab population got out of the way. The refugees would come back in the wake of the victorious Arab armies and not only recover their own property but also inherit the houses and farms of the vanquished and annihilated Jews. Between December 1, 1947, and May 15, 1948, the clash was largely between bands of local Arabs, aided by the disintegrating British authority, and the Jewish fighting organizations.

    The earliest voluntary refugees were understandably the wealthier Arabs of the towns, who made a comparatively leisurely departure in December 1947 and in early 1948. At that stage, departure had not yet been proclaimed as a policy or recognized as a potential propaganda weapon. The Jaffa newspaper Ash Shalab thus wrote on January 30, 1948:

    “The first group of our fifth column consists of those who abandon their houses and businesses and go to live elsewhere. . . . At the first sign of trouble they take to their heels to escape sharing the burden of struggle.”

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    Another weekly, As-Sarih of Jaffa, used even more scathing terms on March 30, 1948, to accuse the inhabitants of Sheikh Munis and other villages in the neighborhood of Tel Aviv of “bringing down disgrace on us all” by “abandoning their villages.” On May 5, the Jerusalem correspondent of the London Times was reporting: “The Arab streets are curiously deserted and, ardently following the poor example of the more moneyed class there has been an exodus from Jerusalem too, though not to the same extent as in Jaffa and Haifa.”

    As the local Arab offensive spread during the late winter and early spring of 1948, the Palestinian Arabs were urged to take to the hills, so as to leave the invading Arab armies unencumbered by a civilian population. Before the State of Israel had been formally declared – and while the British still ruled the country – over 200,000 Arabs left their homes in the coastal plain of Palestine.

    These exhortations came primarily from their own local leaders. Monsignor George Hakim, then Greek Catholic Bishop of Galilee, the leading Christian personality in Palestine for many years, told a Beirut newspaper in the summer of 1948, before the flight of Arabs had ended:

    “The refugees were confident that their absence would not last long (more…)

  • Nancy Pelosi wants border money, but no changes to immigration law: ‘Let’s just keep it separate’
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 10:36 am by Pete Kasperowicz

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    House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Friday that she wants Congress to quickly pass a bill providing billions of dollars of new money to deal with unaccompanied minors at the border, without any additional language aimed at fixing parts of U.S. immigration law that Republicans say has caused the border crisis.

    The Obama administration has called for passage of $3.7 billion bill to help officials detain children as they cross, and then get them medical care while they wait — sometimes for years — for a deportation hearing. Pelosi said a bill similar to that supplemental spending proposal should be passed, without any of the immigration law changes the GOP wants.

    House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of Calif. says she would oppose efforts to link border money to changes in immigration law. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

    (more…)

  • Dr. Ben Carson’s ‘One Nation’ has been a major bestseller…and the mainstream media has ignored it
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 9:20 am by Alak Mehta

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    admin-ajax.phpFollowing its release on May 20, Dr. Ben Carson’s new book “One Nationdebuted at No. 1 on the New York Times Hardcover Nonfiction Best Sellers list, dethroning Thomas Piketty’s “Capital.” After eight weeks on the chart, “One Nation” impressively sits at No. 5.

    Despite its commercial success, Carson’s book has failed to garner attention from the mainstream media. Major publications, including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post, have neglected to review or even cover the book.

    “One Nation” has been met with favorable reviews from readers (receiving a 4.8/5 on Amazon based on 627 reviews and a 4.27/5 on Goodreads based on 260 ratings), making the mainstream media’s lack of attention even more interesting.

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    Here are three of the more insightful takes on Carson’s book from Amazon and Goodreads:

    • “This book supports itself with a strong structure of common sense, basic morality, and a willingness to compromise and listen to opposing views.” (more…)
  • Rand Paul launches defense of the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution
    Posted July 25, 2014 at 9:11 am by Pete Kasperowicz

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    Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is looking to defend the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution not just from the Obama administration, but from states that are finding it too easy to seize private property without first charging and convicting property owners.

    Paul says he introduced his Fifth Amendment Integrity Restoration (FAIR) Act because governments at all levels are ignoring the simple protection it is supposed to be providing for all Americans.

    Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., has proposed legislation to defend the Fifth Amendment from what he says is an overreach of the federal and state governments. (AP Photo/Molly Riley, File)

    (more…)

  • Cruz, Sessions sound alarm on Obama’s plan to expand amnesty program
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 4:36 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

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    Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) vowed Thursday afternoon to fight President Barack Obama’s reported plans to expand amnesty for up to six million more illegal residents by the end of the summer.

    The two senators have been among the most vocal Republican opponents of Obama’s deferred deportation policy, which they say has prompted a flood of unaccompanied minors to try crossing into the United States. (more…)

  • Buck Sexton has had enough of this ‘imperial president’
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 4:14 pm by Chris Peterson

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    Buck-Sexton

    Listen to The Buck Sexton Show every weekday, 12-2p ET, only on TheBlaze Radio Network

    Nobody was safe during Buck Sexton’s opening monologue on TheBlaze Radio Network today. After seeing the video of a woman in labor not being allowed to cross the street to get to the hospital due to Obama’s motorcade, Buck declared that he’s “had enough of this imperial Presidency”.

    It wasn’t just the President that faced harsh criticism from Sexton; the Clinton’s, Joe Biden and all politicians were fair game. “They are supposed to be our fellow citizens entrusted by our consent for a set period of time with the power to protect our rights. Not to enlarge their own authority, not to create these grandiose foundations” (a clear jab at the Clinton’s).

    Buck concluded that this video is “kind of symbolic of this entire Presidency… Whatever Barack needs”.

    Listen to the full audio below:


    Listen to The Buck Sexton Show for free every weekday, from 12-2p ET, only on TheBlaze Radio Network.

  • Is Obamacare withering away?
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 3:33 pm by Stu Burguiere

    Comments (1)

    Earlier this week, the Affordable Care Act was dealt a blow in federal court. What does that mean?

    Today on Pat & Stu we talked to Michael Cannon, director of health policy studies CATO, who broke down the decision and told us what to expect from here:

  • GOP lawmaker returns award to protest Chamber of Commerce’s immigration policy
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 3:18 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (7)

    Rep. Kerry Bentivolio (R-Mich.) said Thursday that he refused to accept an award from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce because of that group’s position on immigration, and called the Chamber the “biggest pro-amnesty group” in the country.

    “The Chamber of Commerce is beholden to special interests and has long since forgotten the main street businesses that struggle everyday to make payroll and keep their company afloat,” Bentivolio said. “It is with great pride that I reject their award, and call on them to stand on the side of America, instead of on the side of China and corporate interests seeking to exploit people for profit.

    U.S. Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Thomas Donohue, second from left, runs a group that supports immigration reform. That position led one GOP lawmaker to reject an award from the Chamber. Pool/Getty Images

    (more…)

  • Hilarious vid shows how Blaze Radio Hosts Doc and Skip were ‘punished’ for their ‘Dallas antics’
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 3:06 pm by Erica Ritz

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    TheBlaze Radio’s Doc Thompson and Skip LaCombe recently spent time in Dallas where, according to security camera footage, they were not on their best behavior:

    Doc was caught urinating on the plants and gambling in the hallway, while Skip was caught doing the radio broadcast in his boxers and stealing copious quantities of chips and sugar packets from the break room.

    When they returned to Dallas for “We Will Not Conform” this week, they didn’t find as warm of a welcome as they hoped. After their key cards didn’t work, it seems they were forced to broadcast from the parking lot:

    TheBlaze Radio's Doc Thompson and Skip LaCombe are forced to broadcast from the parking lot after 'Dallas antics.' (Photo: TheBlaze TV)

    TheBlaze Radio’s Doc Thompson and Skip LaCombe are forced to broadcast from the parking lot after ‘Dallas antics.’ (Photo: TheBlaze TV)

    They were also forced to write repentant sentences on one of Glenn Beck’s many chalkboards:

    TheBlaze Radio's Doc Thompson and Skip LaCombe are punished for their 'Dallas antics.' (Photo: TheBlaze TV)

    TheBlaze Radio’s Doc Thompson and Skip LaCombe are punished for their ‘Dallas antics.’ (Photo: TheBlaze TV)

    So how did it all end? You’ll have to watch the video below, and stay tuned to find out:

  • House moves closer to lawsuit against President Obama
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 2:22 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (2)

    The House on Thursday moved one step closer to passing a resolution allowing the House to sue President Barack Obama for failing to properly implement Obamacare.

    The House Rules Committee approved a final draft of the resolution in a partisan 7-4 vote.  That will allow the House to consider the resolution and pass it as early as next week. (more…)

  • Look closely and you’ll see why these two girls freaked out after taking a picture of themselves
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 2:00 pm by Jonathon M. Seidl

    Comments (4)

    Look closely and you’ll see why Australian field hockey player Jayde Taylor and her teammate freaked out after they snapped this picture of themselves at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre for the Commonwealth Games:

    See it?

    That just happens to be the Queen of England in the background, smiling as if she knows she’s pulling off a photobomb. Another pic by teammate Anna Flanagan captured the same moment but from a different angle:

    (Source: Twitter)

    (Source: Twitter)

  • Boehner indicates no room for Ted Cruz border plan in House bill
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 1:20 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

    Comments (4)

    House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) indicated Thursday that the House will not be considering legislative language to prevent President Barack Obama from expanding his deferred deportation policy, which some Republicans want to see as a condition of approving new funding to ease the crisis at the southern U.S. border.

    Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) has said he wants to see Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy defunded, and says that policy is precisely why about 60,000 illegal immigrant children have tried to cross into the U.S. this year.

    Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, is pushing to end President Barack Obama’s deferred deportation policy, but House GOP leaders indicate they will not consider his language. (AP Photo, J. Scott Applewhite, File)

    (more…)

  • The 10 most popular quotes from Barry Goldwater’s ‘Conscience of a Conservative’
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 12:46 pm by Benjamin Weingarten

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    When Barry Goldwater wrote “The Conscience of a Conservative” in 1960, which became a surprise bestseller, it marked a crucial event in the history of the conservative movement.

    The book, which elaborates on Goldwater’s conservative ideology as contrasted with that of Republicans and Democrats alike in the post-Depression era, has withstood the test of time.

    Barry Goldwater on the cover of Time, June 23, 1961. (Image Source: Time)

    Barry Goldwater on the cover of Time, June 23, 1961. (Image Source: Time)

    Many of the then Arizona senator and future GOP presidential nominee’s arguments about the size and scope of government continue to resonate in the battle between the Tea Party and GOP Establishment today.

    As a means of gauging the elements of Goldwater’s book that have had the most profound impact on readers by remaining relevant today, we looked to Amazon Kindle’s popular highlights feature — which measures the most highlighted passages within a given book — as a proxy. Below are the 10 most popular quotes from Goldwater’s book based on the feature, ranked in descending order by number of highlights.

    1. “[the] first principle of totalitarianism: that the State is competent to do all things and is limited in what it actually does only by the will of those who control the State.”

    2. “Throughout history, government has proved to be the chief instrument for thwarting man’s liberty.”

    3. “Conservatism therefore looks upon the enhancement of man’s spiritual nature as the primary concern of political philosophy. Liberals, on the other hand,— in the name of a concern for “human beings”— regard the satisfaction of economic wants as the dominant mission of society.”

    4. “The Conservative knows that to regard man as part of an undifferentiated mass is to consign him to ultimate slavery.” (more…)

  • Boehner blames Obama for stalled bills on border, VA reform
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 12:31 pm by Pete Kasperowicz

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    House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) on Thursday blasted President Barack Obama for gumming up efforts by Congress to pass bills to fix the border and reform the Department of Veterans Affairs before Congress leaves for its August break.

    Both the House and Senate have been scrambling to pass legislation before August dealing with the humanitarian crisis at the border involving tens of thousands of children who have tried to cross into the United States.

    House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio blamed President Barack Obama for meddling in congressional negotiations to pass a VA reform bill and a border bill, which has stalled those talks. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

    (more…)

  • Former Fed Chair Greenspan says bubbles are ‘function of human nature’; free market economist disagrees
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 10:33 am by Benjamin Weingarten

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    The question as to what causes financial bubbles has plagued mankind for millennia. Former fed chairman Alan Greenspan’s working theory however flies in the face of the free market economic philosophy to which he purported to prescribe.

    According to a recent interview in Marketwatch, Greenspan said:

    I have come to the conclusion that bubbles…are a function of human nature. We don’t have enough observations, but my tentative hypothesis to what we’re dealing with is that both a necessary and sufficient condition for the emergence of a bubble is a protracted period of stable economic activity at low inflation. So it is a very difficult policy problem. I do believe that central banks that believe they can quell bubbles are living in a state of unrealism.”

    Alan Greenspan. (Image Source: Matt Mendelsohn / Corbis)

    Alan Greenspan. (Image Source: Matt Mendelsohn / Corbis)

    Greenspan, a former outspoken free marketeer who once wrote a letter about the link between the gold standard and economic freedom for Ayn Rand’s Objectivist newsletter, and is no doubt familiar with the work of Austrian economists, would certainly be challenged by the deans of the Austrian school.

    Indeed economists like the late Murray Rothbard contend that bubbles are not in and of themselves natural, but rather a result of a natural reaction by markets to unnatural central bank intervention.

    The Austrian economist in his seminal study on the causes of the Great Depression, aptly titled “America’s Great Depression,” writes that in order to understand the causes of bubbles, we first need to understand what a bubble is. According to Rothbard, the bubble inflates when market participants make errors en masse:

    Entrepreneurs are largely in the business of forecasting. They must invest and pay costs in the present, in the expectation of recouping a profit by sale either to consumers or to other entrepreneurs further down in the economy’s structure of production. The better entrepreneurs, with better judgment in forecasting consumer or other producer demands, make profits; the inefficient entrepreneurs suffer losses. The market, therefore, provides a training ground for the reward and expansion of successful, far-sighted entrepreneurs and the weeding out of inefficient businessmen. As a rule only some businessmen suffer losses at any one time; the bulk either break even or earn profits. How, then, do we explain the curious phenomenon of the crisis when almost all entrepreneurs suffer sudden losses? In short, how did all the country’s astute businessmen come to make such errors together, and why were they all suddenly revealed at this particular time?

    This mass of errors is not natural as asserted by Greenspan, but created by the rational response of profit-seeking individuals to central bank intervention which distorts interest rates. As Rothbard writes: “In the purely free and unhampered market, there will be no cluster of errors.” The cluster of errors results from: (more…)

  • Lawmaker blasts two-page description of VA’s plan to spend $13.5 billion
    Posted July 24, 2014 at 10:30 am by Pete Kasperowicz

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    Rep. Jeff Miller (R-Fla.) on Thursday criticized the Department of Veterans Affairs for failing to provide details for its request for $13.5 billion in funding to resolve the ongoing veterans health care crisis, and instead offering the House just a two-page description.

    Miller, who chairs the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, said in a morning hearing that Congress has given the VA every resource it has required. He said the committee was surprised when Acting VA Secretary Sloan Gibson suddenly told a Senate hearing that he needed billions more in funding, and 10,000 more medical staffers.

    Acting Secretary of Veterans Affairs Sloan Gibson wants $13.5 billion to repair the broken VA, but so far, the VA has given the House a two-page description of how the money would be spent. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)

    (more…)