Posted: October 22, 2016 Filed under: History, Law & Justice, Mediasphere, Think Tank | Tags: Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, Antonin Scalia, Supreme Court of the United States, Peter Thiel, Republican Party (United States), Burial, Merrick Garland, Right to Bear Arms
Personal reflections on twenty-five years on the Court, his jurisprudence, and his education. Click “Show more” to view all chapters. For more conversations, visit here.
Chapter 1 (00:15 – 32:38): On the Supreme Court
Chapter 2 (32:38 – 1:09:36): The Education of Clarence Thomas
Appointed by President George H.W. Bush, Justice Clarence Thomas has served on the Supreme Court since October 1991. In this conversation, Justice Thomas shares personal reflections on the Court, his jurisprudence, and the people, ideas, institutions, and experiences that have influenced him. Justice Thomas also reflects on his late colleague and friend Justice Antonin Scalia.
Posted: October 22, 2016 Filed under: Breaking News, Entertainment, Humor, Mediasphere, White House | Tags: Addison Russell, Barack Obama, Bill Murray, Chicago Cubs, Jon Lester, Josh Earnest, Los Angeles Dodgers, Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, White House, White House Press Secretary
Talking up the Chicago Cubs, the Hollywood star wanders into the press briefing Room just after White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest had finished his daily briefing.
Actor Bill Murray sporting a Chicago Cubs jacket and cap talks during a brief visit in the Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, Friday, Oct. 21, 2016. Murray is in Washington to receive the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta
Posted: October 22, 2016 Filed under: Crime & Corruption, Guns and Gadgets, Politics, Self Defense | Tags: ABC News, Ash Carter, Barack Obama, Donald Trump, Executive order, Gun control, Gun laws, Gun rights, Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Republican Party (United States), Second Amendment, White House
More emails from Hillary Clinton campaign staffers were made public by WikiLeaks this week, granting insight into the campaign’s deceptive attacks on your rights and the extent to which Clinton is in league with the country’s most powerful anti-gun forces. Further, the emails provide more information about Clinton’s insistence on pursuing gun control by executive order.
Medium.com purports to be “a community of readers and writers offering unique perspectives on ideas large and small.” However, there’s nothing unique about the perspective of a January 12 item purportedly authored by a gun control advocate who was the victim of domestic violence. In fact, according to leaked emails, the piece was authored by Clinton campaign consultants and planted on Medium.com by campaign staff.
On January 8, Clinton campaign chair John Podesta forwarded an email titled, “Draft medium post on guns.” The author of the original email is not clear from the WikiLeaks archive. The email states, in part:
Hey everyone –
Ron Klain wrote a riff for HRC and sent it to Teddy on guns. We thought it could make a strong Medium post from someone who could really speak to this issue (not HRC and not someone on our campaign).
Here’s the draft, which I edited and can personalize depending on who we want to use as an author. A survivor of gun violence? An advocate or family member?
If we can find someone, and if folks want, we could get this posted today to Medium in someone’s name (not us). Here it is, let me know your thoughts!
The email goes on to provide a draft of the commentary.
Ronald Klain is a prominent Democratic operative who served as the chief of staff to both Vice President Al Gore and Vice President Joe Biden. Most recently, Klain has consulted on the Clinton campaign.
From the email, it appears Klain developed an anti-gun commentary intended to be used by Clinton herself. However, the campaign seemed to have thought the item would carry more weight if it appeared under the name of someone outside the campaign who had a history with the issue.
The plan outlined in this email was carried out, as on January 12 a piece titled “I’m With Hillary” was posted to Medium.com with Clai Lasher listed as its author. Lasher was shot by her stepfather in 1970 and is a survivor engagement lead at Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety. Just as the email suggested, portions of the piece were personalized for Lasher. The majority of Klain’s commentary was not altered.
This incident should prompt the public to question just how much of the pro-Clinton content appearing in the media has been directly orchestrated by the Clinton campaign itself.
Recently released emails also give more insight into the unsavory nature of the Clinton campaign’s attacks on Democratic rival Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). The emails show that Clinton’s anti-Sanders messaging was tailored to the racial background of the target audience. In a February 7 email exchange between Democratic consultant Mandy Grunwald and Clinton campaign staff, potential attacks on Sanders were discussed. Specifically, the emails contemplated using the gun issue to attack Sanders’ support among African Americans. In one email, Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook wrote, “We may need to use guns tactically in the AA community–just like we’ll have tactical skirmishes on crime bill, etc.”
During the Democratic primaries, Sanders called on Clinton to produce the transcripts of her paid speeches to Goldman Sachs. Clinton refused, but WikiLeaks obtained the transcripts and has made them available to the public. While much of the speeches address financial and foreign policy, during a June 4, 2013 question and answer session with Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, Clinton used the forum to take a swipe at NRA.
Despite NRA being a nonpartisan organization that routinely supports candidates across the political spectrum, Clinton blamed NRA, in part, for what she perceived is an increase in partisanship that stymied her preferred agenda. In doing so, Clinton gave a ham-handed retelling of an instance where NRA pursued the best interests of our members by supporting the opponent of a Tennessee lawmaker that had obstructed the passage of important Right-to-Carry legislation. Clinton characterized NRA’s vigorous defense of the rights of the state’s gun owners as unreasonable. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: October 17, 2016 Filed under: Crime & Corruption, Mediasphere, Politics, U.S. News | Tags: ABC, Alisyn Camerota, Barack Obama, Campaign financing, Campaign manager, CBS, Center for Public Integrity, Clinton Cash, CNN, Corey Lewandowski, Democratic Party, Donald Trump, Donald Trump presidential campaign, Fundraising, Hillary Clinton, journalism, media, NBC, New York Times, New Yorker, The Trump Organization
New Yorker television critic Emily Nussbaum, a newly minted Pulitzer Prize winner, spent the Republican National Convention pen-pricking presidential nominee Donald Trump as a misogynist shyster running an “ugly and xenophobic campaign.”
What Nussbaum didn’t disclose in her dispatches: she contributed $250 to Democrat Hillary Clinton in April.
On the nation’s left coast, Les Waldron, an Emmy Award-winning assignment editor at television station KFMB, the CBS affiliate in San Diego, swung right in July, shooting $28 to Trump.
And Carole Simpson, a former ABC “World News Tonight” anchor who in 1992 became the first African-American woman to moderate a presidential debate, is not moderate about her personal politics: the current Emerson College distinguished journalist-in-residence and regular TV news guest has given Clinton $2,800.
Conventional journalistic wisdom holds that reporters and editors are referees on politics’ playing field — bastions of neutrality who mustn’t root for Team Red or Team Blue, either in word or deed.
But during this decidedly unconventional election season, during which “the media” has itself become a prominent storyline, several hundred news professionals have aligned themselves with Clinton or Trump by personally donating money to one or the other.
In all, people identified in federal campaign finance filings as journalists, reporters, news editors or television news anchors — as well as other donors known to be working in journalism — have combined to give more than $396,000 to the presidential campaigns of Clinton and Trump, according to a Center for Public Integrity analysis.
Nearly all of that money — more than 96 percent — has benefited Clinton: About 430 people who work in journalism have, through August, combined to give about $382,000 to the Democratic nominee, the Center for Public Integrity’s analysis indicates.
About 50 identifiable journalists have combined to give about $14,000 to Trump. (Talk radio ideologues, paid TV pundits and the like — think former Trump campaign manager-turned-CNN commentator Corey Lewandowski — are not included in the tally.)
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: October 17, 2016 Filed under: Crime & Corruption, Mediasphere, Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Barack Obama, Campaign manager, CNN, Corey Lewandowski, Donald Trump, Donald Trump presidential campaign, Gateway Pundit, Mainstream media, Republican Party (United States), United States
CNN host Brian Stetler blamed the fire bombing of a North Carolina GOP office on the “overheated rhetoric” of Donald Trump.
Posted: October 14, 2016 Filed under: Crime & Corruption, History, Politics, Terrorism, Think Tank | Tags: Asia, Barack Obama, Boston, California, China, Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, Middle East, United States, Victor Davis Hanson
Our nation faces many existential challenges that our politicians refuse to address.
Victor Davis Hanson writes: The Greek city-states in the fourth-century BC, fifth-century AD Rome, and the Western European democracies after World War I all knew they could not continue as usual with their fiscal, social, political, and economic behavior. But all these states and societies feared far more the self-imposed sacrifices that might have saved them.
“We seem to be reaching that point of stasis in postmodern America. Once simple and logical solutions to our fiscal and social problems are now seen as too radical even to discuss.”
Mid-fifteenth-century Byzantium was facing endemic corruption, a radically declining birthrate and shrinking population, and the end of civic militarism—all the last-gasp symptoms of an irreversible decline. Its affluent ruling and religious orders and expansive government services could no longer be supported by disappearing agrarians and the overtaxed mercantile middle class.
[Read the full story here, at Hoover Institution]
Returning to the values of the Emperor Justinian’s sixth-century empire that had once ensured a vibrant Byzantine culture of stability and prosperity throughout the old Roman east remained a nostalgic daydream. Given the hardship and sacrifice that would have been required to change the late Byzantine mindset, most residents of Constantinople plodded on to their rendezvous with oblivion in 1453.
We seem to be reaching that point of stasis in postmodern America. Once simple and logical solutions to our fiscal and social problems are now seen as too radical even to discuss. Consider the $20-trillion national debt. Most Americans accept that current annual $500 billion budget deficits are not sustainable—but they also see them as less extreme than the recently more normal $1 trillion in annual red ink.
“Race relations pose comparable paradoxes. Inner-city Chicago has turned into a war zone with over 500 murders so far this year alone.”
Americans also accept that the Obama administration doubled the national debt on the expectation of permanent near-zero interest rates, which cannot continue. When interest rates return to more normal historical levels of 4-5% per annum, the costs of servicing the debt—along with unsustainable Social Security and Medicare entitlement costs—will begin to undermine the entire budget.
“Illegal immigration, like the deficits, must cease, but stopping it would be too politically incorrect and painful even to ponder. The mess in Europe—millions of indigent and illegal immigrants who have fled their own failed states to become dependent on the largess of their generous adopted countries, but without any desire to embrace their hosts’ culture—is apparently America’s future.”
Count up current local, state and federal income taxes, payroll taxes, property and sales taxes, and new health care taxes, and it will be hard to find the necessary additional revenue from a strapped and overtaxed middle class, much less from the forty-seven percent of Americans who currently pay no federal income taxes.
[Read the full text here, at Hoover Institution]
The Obama administration has tried to reduce the budget by issuing defense cuts and tax hikes—but it has refused to touch entitlement spending, where the real gains could be made. The result is more debt, even as, paradoxically, our military was weakened, taxes rose, revenue increased, and economic growth remained anemic at well below 2% per annum.
“…there are few multiracial societies of the past that have avoided descending into destructive ethnic chauvinism and tribalism once assimilation and integration were replaced by salad-bowl identity politics. Common words and phrases such as ‘illegal alien’ or ‘deportation’ are now considered taboo, while ‘sanctuary city’ is a euphemism for a neo-Confederate nullification of federal immigration laws by renegade states and municipalities.”
Illegal immigration poses a similar dilemma. No nation can remain stable when 10-20 million foreign nationals have crashed through what has become an open border and reside unlawfully in the United States—any more than a homeowner can have neighbors traipsing through and camping in his unfenced yard. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: October 14, 2016 Filed under: Breaking News, Global, Mediasphere, Politics, Russia, Science & Technology, U.S. News, War Room | Tags: Barack Obama, CIA, Cyber Attack, Cyber Crime, Cyberwarfare, Donald Trump, Joe Biden, NBC News, United States Congress, White House, White House Press Secretary
CIA Prepping for Possible Cyber Strike Against Russia
William M. Arkin, Ken Dilanian, and Robert Windrem report: The Obama administration is contemplating an unprecedented cyber covert action against Russia in retaliation for alleged Russian interference in the American presidential election, U.S. intelligence officials told NBC News.
Current and former officials with direct knowledge of the situation say the CIA has been asked to deliver options to the White House for a wide-ranging “clandestine” cyber operation designed to harass and “embarrass” the Kremlin leadership.
The sources did not elaborate on the exact measures the CIA was considering, but said the agency had already begun opening cyber doors, selecting targets and making other preparations for an operation. Former intelligence officers told NBC News that the agency had gathered reams of documents that could expose unsavory tactics by Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Vice President Joe Biden told “Meet the Press” moderator Chuck Todd on Friday that “we’re sending a message” to Putin and that “it will be at the time of our choosing, and under the circumstances that will have the greatest impact.”
When asked if the American public will know a message was sent, the vice president replied, “Hope not.”
Retired Admiral James Stavridis told NBC News’ Cynthia McFadden that the U.S. should attack Russia’s ability to censor its internal internet traffic and expose the financial dealings of Putin and his associates.
“It’s well known that there’s great deal of offshore money moved outside of Russia from oligarchs,” he said. “It would be very embarrassing if that was revealed, and that would be a proportional response to what we’ve seen” in Russia’s alleged hacks and leaks targeting U.S. public opinion.
Sean Kanuck, who was until this spring the senior U.S. intelligence official responsible for analyzing Russian cyber capabilities, said not mounting a response would carry a cost.
“If you publicly accuse someone,” he said, “and don’t follow it up with a responsive action, that may weaken the credible threat of your response capability.”
President Obama will ultimately have to decide whether he will authorize a CIA operation. Officials told NBC News that for now there are divisions at the top of the administration about whether to proceed.
Two former CIA officers who worked on Russia told NBC News that there is a long history of the White House asking the CIA to come up with options for covert action against Russia, including cyber options — only to abandon the idea.
“We’ve always hesitated to use a lot of stuff we’ve had, but that’s a political decision,” one former officer said. “If someone has decided, `We’ve had enough of the Russians,’ there is a lot we can do. Step one is to remind them that two can play at this game and we have a lot of stuff. Step two, if you are looking to mess with their networks, we can do that, but then the issue becomes, they can do worse things to us in other places.”
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: October 14, 2016 Filed under: Crime & Corruption, Law & Justice, Politics, White House | Tags: Barack Obama, Colin Powell, Democratic National Committee, Democratic Party (United States), Donald Trump, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Hillary Clinton, Huma Abedin, Justin Cooper (aide), United States Department of State
Hillary Clinton finally submitted her court-ordered written response to 25 questions posed by Judicial Watch regarding her private email practices. And if there’s one thing we’ve learned from the deposition it’s this: Clinton has absolutely committed perjury.
Why? Let’s break down the facts.
In Clinton’s sworn deposition to Judicial Watch she says she never got permission for her private, unsecure email server, and that she got the idea from former Secretary of State Colin Powell. But she told the FBI in July that she didn’t get the idea from Powell. She also told the House Select Committee on Benghazi she’d gotten permission for her server.
All three of those stories can’t be true.
Deductive reasoning says:
- If her Judicial Watch testimony is true, then she lied to the FBI about Powell. That’s a crime.
- If her Judicial Watch testimony is true, then she lied to the Benghazi Committee about the server. That’s a crime.
- If her FBI testimony is true, then she lied in a deposition. That’s a crime, and it’s what got Bill Clinton impeached and disbarred.
- If her Benghazi Committee testimony is true, then she lied in a deposition. That’s a crime, and it’s what got Bill Clinton impeached and disbarred.
Furthermore, the fact that she wasn’t under oath when speaking to the FBI is irrelevant. It is a crime to lie to the FBI in any interview setting.
The Judicial Watch press release is below, along with all of Clinton’s answers.
Judicial Watch Releases New Hillary Clinton Email Answers Given under Oath
(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch today released received responses under oath from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton concerning her email practices. Judicial Watch submitted twenty-five questions on August 30 to Clinton as ordered by U.S. District Court Judge Emmet G. Sullivan.
The new Clinton responses in the Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit before Judge Sullivan was first filed in September 2013 seeking records about the controversial employment status of Huma Abedin, former deputy chief of staff to Clinton. The lawsuit was reopened because of revelations about the clintonemail.com system (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:13-cv-01363)).
Judicial Watch has already taken the deposition testimony of seven Clinton aides and State Department officials.
Below is text from the document filed with the court today:
NON-PARTY HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON’S RESPONSE
TO PLAINTIFF’S INTERROGATORIES
Pursuant to the Court’s August 19, 2016 order and Rule 33 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Non-Party Hillary Rodham Clinton hereby responds to Plaintiff’s Interrogatories dated August 30, 2016. The General Objections and the Objections to the Definitions set forth below are incorporated into each of the specific responses that follow. Any specific objections are in addition to the General Objections and Objections to the Definitions, and failure to reiterate a General Objection or Objection to the Definitions does not constitute a waiver of that or any other objection.
- Secretary Clinton objects to the Interrogatories on the ground that any discovery of Secretary Clinton is unwarranted in this case, for the reasons set forth in Secretary Clinton’s Opposition to Plaintiff’s Motion to Depose Hillary Rodham Clinton, Clarence Finney, and John Bentel (Dkt. #102) and Surreply in Further Opposition to Plaintiff’s Motion to Depose Hillary Rodham Clinton, Clarence Finney, and John Bentel (Dkt. #109), and as stated by Secretary Clinton’s counsel during the Court hearing on July 18, 2016. Secretary Clinton will answer the Interrogatories notwithstanding this objection, subject to the other objections stated herein.
- Secretary Clinton objects to the Interrogatories insofar as they request information outside the scope of permitted discovery in this case. The Court permitted discovery of Secretary Clinton on the topics of “the purpose for the creation and operation of the clintonemail.com system for State Department business,” as well as “the State Department’s approach and practice for processing FOIA requests that potentially implicated former Secretary Clinton’s and Ms. Abedin’s e-mails and State’s processing of the FOIA request that is the subject of this action.” Dkt. #124, at 14, 19 (internal quotation marks omitted). Secretary Clinton will answer the Interrogatories insofar as they seek non-privileged information related to those topics.
- Secretary Clinton objects to the Interrogatories insofar as they request information relating to events that occurred, or actions taken by Secretary Clinton, after her tenure as Secretary of State. Such post-tenure actions or events are not within the scope of the permitted topics of discovery set forth in General Objection No. 2.
- Secretary Clinton objects to the Interrogatories insofar as they request information about Secretary Clinton’s use of her clintonemail.com account to send and receive e-mails that were personal in nature, as such use is not within the scope of the permitted topics set forth in General Objection No. 2. Secretary Clinton will construe the Interrogatories to ask only about her use of her clintonemail.com account to send and receive e-mails related to State Department business.
- Secretary Clinton objects to the Interrogatories insofar as they request information about management, retention, and/or preservation of federal records. This action arises under FOIA, which does not govern management, retention, or preservation of federal records. See Kissinger v. Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, 445 U.S. 136, 152 (1980). Accordingly, management, retention, and/or preservation of federal records are not within the scope of the permitted topics of discovery set forth in General Objection No. 2.
- Secretary Clinton objects to Instruction No. 1 insofar as it purports to require Secretary Clinton to provide information that is not within her personal knowledge. The purpose of the limited discovery permitted by the Court is to obtain Secretary Clinton’s “personal knowledge of her purpose in using the [clintonemail.com] system.” Dkt. #124, at 16; see also id. at (directing Plaintiff “to propound questions that are relevant to Secretary Clinton’s unique first-hand knowledge”). Secretary Clinton is answering these Interrogatories based on her direct personal knowledge. She is not undertaking to provide information known only to other persons, including but not limited to her attorneys, representatives, persons acting under, by, or through her, or subject to her control or supervision, or other persons acting on her behalf.
- Secretary Clinton objects to these Interrogatories to the extent that they call for the production of information that is privileged or otherwise protected from discovery by the attorney-client privilege, the work product doctrine, or any other applicable privilege, protection, or immunity. Secretary Clinton will respond only to the extent privileged or otherwise protected information is not required and to the extent that the Interrogatory is not otherwise objectionable.
- Secretary Clinton objects to Instruction No. 5 insofar as it purports to require Secretary Clinton to identify the factual and legal basis for a claim of privilege. Secretary Clinton is not providing herewith a privilege log.
OBJECTIONS TO DEFINITIONS
- Secretary Clinton objects to the definition of “Clintonemail.com email system” insofar as it refers to e-mail system(s), server(s), provider(s), and infrastructure used to host her clintonemail.com e-mail account after her tenure as Secretary of State. Information concerning the e-mail system(s), server(s), provider(s), and infrastructure used to host her clintonemail.com account after her tenure as Secretary of State is not relevant to the purpose for the creation and operation of the clintonemail.com account during her tenure as Secretary of State, and therefore is outside the scope of the permitted discovery. In answering these Interrogatories, Secretary Clinton will construe the term “Clintonemail.com email system” to refer to the e-mail system(s), server(s), provider(s), and infrastructure used to host her clintonemail.com e-mail account during her tenure as Secretary of State.
- Secretary Clinton objects to the definition of “Clintonemail.com account” insofar as it refers to e-mail addresses used by other individuals ending in the domain name “clintonemail.com.” In answering these Interrogatories, Secretary Clinton will construe the term “Clintonemail.com account” to refer to email@example.com, which was the clintonemail.com account used by Secretary Clinton during her tenure.
RESPONSES TO INTERROGATORIES
- Describe the creation of the clintonemail.com system, including who decided to create the system, the date it was decided to create the system, why it was created, who set it up, and when it became operational.
Response: Secretary Clinton objects to Interrogatory No. 1 as outside the scope of permitted discovery. The clintonemail.com system, as that term is defined in the Instructions and subject to Secretary Clinton’s objection to that definition, consisted of equipment set up to host e-mail for President Clinton’s staff. Information regarding the creation of that system, including the reasons for its creation, is irrelevant to this lawsuit and outside the scope of permitted discovery. The Court permitted discovery in this case on the question of “the purpose for the creation and operation of the clintonemail.com system for State Department business.” Dkt. #124, at 17 (emphasis added). That question is the subject of Interrogatory No. 2, which is answered below.
- Describe the creation of your clintonemail.com email account, including who decided to create it, when it was created, why it was created, and, if you did not set up the account yourself, who set it up for you.
Response: In the Senate, when Secretary Clinton began using e-mail, she used a personal e-mail account for both work-related and personal e-mail. Secretary Clinton decided to transition from the account she used in her tenure at the Senate to the clintonemail.com account. She recalls that it was created in early 2009. Secretary Clinton did not set up the account. Although Secretary Clinton does not have specific knowledge of the details of the account’s creation, her best understanding is that one of President Clinton’s aides, Justin Cooper, set up the account. She decided to use a clintonemail.com account for the purpose of convenience.
- When did you decide to use a clintonemail.com email account to conduct official State Department business and whom did you consult in making this decision?
Response: Secretary Clinton recalls deciding to use a clintonemail.com e-mail account to conduct official State Department business in early 2009. She does not recall any specific consultations regarding the decision to use the clintonemail.com account for official State Department business.
- Identify all communications in which you participated concerning or relating to your decision to use a clintonemail.com email account to conduct official State Department business and, for each communication, identify the time, date, place, manner (e.g., in person, in writing, by telephone, or by electronic or other means), persons present or participating, and content of the communication.
Response: Secretary Clinton objects to Interrogatory No. 4 insofar as it purports to request information about communications after her tenure as Secretary of State, which communications would be irrelevant to the purpose for the creation and operation of her clintonemail.com account while she was Secretary of State. Subject to the foregoing objection, Secretary Clinton states that she does not recall participating in any communications before or during her tenure as Secretary of State concerning or relating to her decision to use a clintonemail.com account to conduct official State Department business. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: October 13, 2016 Filed under: Crime & Corruption, Global, Mediasphere, Think Tank | Tags: Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Alexander II of Russia, American Left, Anti-Americanism, Babalu Blog, Barack Obama, Republican Party (United States), The Black Book of Communism, United States, United States Congress
How many deaths is too many? VOC’s #CommunismKills campaign begins with the premise that each individual life taken by communism is one too many. Communism has killed over 100,000,000 people over the last 100 years and continues to do so in the countries of China, Cuba, North Korea, Vietnam, and Laos. This staggering number represents more than just an aggregate; it represents one hundred million individuals, each with his or her own history, dignity, and humanity.
In the last 100 years, since the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917, over 100 million people have been killed by communism. Many were executed directly by communist revolutionaries and functionaries who justified this murder as one more step toward an imagined communist utopia. Others were caught in the crossfire of civil wars, revolutions, and invasions as communist forces tried to expand their dominion by military force.
“21st century communist countries do not kill people by the millions anymore. But every year, communist countries disappear dissidents, silence journalists, and imprison innocent people. 100,000,000 deaths in 100 years is an astounding tally.”
Most, however, died as a result of massive famines caused by communist economic policies. In the Soviet Union and China, where most of communism’s victims lie, the famines were not incidental or accidental. Stalin directly targeted ethnic Ukrainians by seizing their property and food in the name of common ownership. Mao Zedong, upon hearing that his people were starving due to his communist economic policies, famously said, “Educate peasants to eat less.”
When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, the United States Congress worried that the “heroic sacrifices of the victims of communism may be forgotten as international communism and its imperial bases continue to collapse and crumble.”
[i] Stéphane Courtois et al., The Black Book of Communism: Crimes, Terror, Repression, translated by Jonathan Murphy and Mark Kramer (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1999).
[ii] Alexander N. Yakovlev, A Century of Violence in Soviet Russia, translated by Anthony Austin (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2002).
In 1993, President Bill Clinton signed Public Law 103-199, establishing the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, and reminding the world that “Congress finds that, since 1917, the rulers of empires and international communism led by Vladimir I. Lenin and Mao Tse-tung have been responsible for the deaths of over 100,000,000 victims.”
A veiled Muslim Uyghur woman walks past a statue of Mao Zedong in Kashgar in Xinjiang province. (Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)
The 100,000,000 number is made all the more upsetting by the fact that it’s inexact and growing. Unlike the Nazis, communists did not keep accurate records of the amount of people they killed. In places like China and Ukraine, government archives have only opened in the last decade, revealing that there are tragically more and more victims to be discovered, counted, and memorialized. Over the course of the past decades, many scholars have attempted to establish solid numbers for communism’s victims, some of which can be found here. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: October 12, 2016 Filed under: Entertainment, Humor, Mediasphere, Politics, White House | Tags: Barack Obama, Bernie Sanders, Donald Trump, Facebook, Gary Johnson, Hillary Clinton, Jill Stein, Libertarian Party (United States), Matt Welch, White House
In last night’s debate, was there a positive case for Hillary being fit for the White House? Are there Trump policies that are gonna turn this mother around? Of course not. What were you even thinking.
Let’s pretend for a moment that the biggest headlines out of Sunday night’s presidential debate had nothing to do with sexual assault allegations, or non-handshakes, or threats to jail political oponents—but instead were about policy.
In that bizarre alternative universe, what could we actually learn? Last night we learned that the two exhausted political parties have nothing much left to offer except critiques about how lousy the other one is.Hosted by Matt Welch; camera and editing by Jim Epstein.
Posted: October 11, 2016 Filed under: Mediasphere, Breaking News, Crime & Corruption, Politics, Censorship | Tags: Barack Obama, Democratic Party (United States), Sarah Palin, Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, The New York Times, Hard Choices, Tim Kaine, Jennifer Palmieri, Going Rogue
Hillary Clinton spent time in summer 2015 with The New York Times reporter Mark Leibovich and made a crack about 2008 Republican presidential candidate Sarah Palin.
But the remark didn’t make it into the long profile. Leibovich agreed to give the Clinton campaign veto power over the statements she made.
The revelation comes in Part III of a massive email release from WikiLeaks.
Leibovich evidently gave the campaign the ability to ax quotes as part of a deal for access. Representatives from The Times did not immediately respond to an inquiry from LifeZette.
Leibovich emailed campaign Communications Director Jennifer Palmieri on July 7, 2015, to try to lobby for a batch of quotes.
“These exchanges were pretty interesting … would love the option to use,” he wrote.
[Read the full story here, at LifeZette]
The Palin shot came during a discussion between Clinton and Leibovich in which the Democratic candidate for president discussed having eaten moose stew in Alaska. “So that’s why I always got a big kick out of Sarah Palin with all of her, ‘We’re cooking up some moose stew here,'” she said. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: October 9, 2016 Filed under: Economics, Politics, White House | Tags: Barack Obama, commander in chief, DEBT, Democratic Party, Federal government of the United States, George W. Bush, George W. Bush Presidential Center, Hillary Clinton, U.S. Treasury, United States
The $9,036,534,448,884.32 increase in the federal debt under Obama so far equals approximately $76,442 per household.
(CNSNews.com) – Terence P. Jeffrey reports: The federal government passed a fiscal milestone on the first business day of fiscal 2017—which was Monday, Oct. 3—when the total federal debt accumulated during the presidency of Barack Obama topped $9,000,000,000,000 for the first time.
On Jan. 20, 2009, when Obama was inaugurated, the total debt of the federal government was $10,626,877,048,913.08, according to data published by the U.S. Treasury.
As of the close of business on Friday, Sept, 30, the last day of fiscal 2016, the total federal debt was $19,573,444,713,936.79. At that point, the total federal debt had increased under Obama by $8,946,567,665,023.71.
[Read the full story here, at cnsnews.com]
On Monday, Oct. 3, the first business day of fiscal 2017, the total federal debt closed at $19,642,949,742,561.51. At that point, the debt had increased under Obama by $9,016,072,693,648.43 from the $10,626,877,048,913.08 it stood at on the day of Obama’s inauguration.
As of the close of business, on Wednesday, Oct. 5—the latest day for which the Treasury has reported—the total federal debt was $19,663,411,497,797.40. That means that so far in Obama’s presidency, the federal debt has increased $9,036,534,448,884.32.
Given that there were 118,215,000 households in the United States in June (the latest estimate from the Census Bureau), the $9,036,534,448,884.32 increase in the federal debt under Obama so far equals approximately $76,442 per household. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: October 8, 2016 Filed under: Entertainment, Humor, Mediasphere, Politics, Reading Room, White House | Tags: Barack Obama, Books, Carnegie Public Library, Pussy, video
Posted: October 7, 2016 Filed under: Diplomacy, Global, Mediasphere, Politics, Russia, War Room, White House | Tags: Barack Obama, Bashar al-Assad, Charles Krauthammer, Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, Moscow, No-fly zone, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, RUSSIA, S-300 (missile), Syria, United States
This is as serious as you say it is, and it tells you how far we have fallen in the region. We were the ones, before the evacuation in Iraq, we were the ones — for all the blood and the toil and the waste of the initial invasion — who controlled that area. We controlled the airspace. We had airbases in Iraq — we controlled everything. No country would ever have said to us, and nobody was in a position to say to us, ‘You can’t have a no-fly zone, or we will patrol and shoot you down.’”
“The Russians are now in Syria, they have the approval of the government, so they have international law — I think it is ridiculous to worry about that, but the administration does — on their side, and they are telling the United States, which were the dominant power for half a century here: ‘If you go up in the air we’ll shoot you down.’ They have just installed in Tartus — which is a naval base, the Russian naval base — S-300 missiles which can do that, meaning they actually have not only a threat, but they have the capacity to shoot American airplanes down. Its probably a bluff because it could trigger a war, it could trigger something extremely serious. But it means we are excluded and the Russians are in charge. Think about the reversal of fortunes, of a place where we were the dominant power since the 1970s.”
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Posted: October 4, 2016 Filed under: Crime & Corruption, Law & Justice, Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Barack Obama, Bernie Sanders, Federal Investigation Agency, Government Accountability Office, Health Insurance, Insurance Claims Process, Massachusetts, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act
Official response to @GovWaste ethics complaint about Senate calling itself a small business to dodge Obamacare.
(Washington, D.C.) – The Senate Ethics Committee has cavalierly dismissed a June 25, 2015 complaint from the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste (CCAGW) and nine other signatories alleging that senators or Senate employees committed fraud and broke federal laws when they submitted applications to the Washington, D.C. Small Business Exchange, claiming status as a “small business.” As a result, rather than being subjected to the Obamacare healthcare exchange as individuals, senators and their staff were able to buy insurance and qualify for taxpayer-funded subsidies as employer and employees. The September 21, 2016 response from the committee stated that the allegations had been “carefully evaluated” and “that there had been no violation of Senate Rules.” The committee made clear that it would not reconsider its decision or take any further action.
“The Senate and Senate offices are plainly not small businesses. The falsified documents were a blatant attempt by senators to shield themselves from the harmful effects of Obamacare. This committee’s arbitrary and capricious decision is another sad example of why taxpayers have such contempt for their elected officials.”
The Affordable Care Act (ACA), better known as ObamaCare, required members of Congress and their staff to enroll in individual plans through the new healthcare exchanges. As open enrollment approached in 2014, members and staff realized that by enrolling as individuals, they would no longer receive generous taxpayer-funded contributions to help pay their insurance premiums as they had for decades under the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program. They would instead only qualify for subsidies if their household income was less than 400 percent of the federal poverty level, just like tens of millions of other Americans who had to purchase insurance in the individual market.
To get around this problem, senators from both sides of the aisle worked with the White House and the Office of Personnel Management to convince the agency to issue special guidance permitting them and their staff to enroll in the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP), which was also created under Obamacare. The applications that were submitted to the D.C. Small Business Exchange farcically claimed that the Senate and/or each Senate office is a small business with fewer than 50 employees. The employer was identified as “Twenty Congress,” and the statements were sworn to be true. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: October 2, 2016 Filed under: Asia, China, Self Defense, Space & Aviation, War Room | Tags: Barack Obama, Korea, Korean Peninsula, North Korea, Pyongyang, SEOUL, Shinzō Abe, South Korea, Terminal High Altitude Area Defense, United Nations Security Council, United States, Xi Jinping, Xinhua News Agency
BEIJING (Reuters) – The United States and South Korea are destined to “pay the price” for their decision to deploy an advanced missile defense system which will inevitably prompt a “counter attack”, China’s top newspaper said on Saturday.
“If the United States and South Korea harm the strategic security interests of countries in the region including China, then they are destined to pay the price for this and receive a proper counter attack.”
Tension on the Korean peninsula has been high this year, beginning with North Korea’s fourth nuclear test in January, which was followed by a satellite launch, a string of tests of various missiles, and its fifth and largest nuclear test last month.
In July, South Korea agreed with the United States to deploy the U.S. Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-missile system to protect against any North Korean threats.
South Korea aims to deploy the system on a golf course, a defense ministry official said on Friday.
But the plan has angered China, which worries that THAAD’s powerful radar would compromise its security and do nothing to lower temperatures on the Korean peninsula.
In a commentary, the ruling Communist Party’s official People’s Daily said China’s opposition to THAAD would never change as it was a serious threat to the regional strategic security balance.
“Like any other country, China can neither be vague nor indifferent on security matters that affect its core interests,” the newspaper said in the commentary, published under the pen name “Zhong Sheng”, meaning “Voice of China”, often used to give views on foreign policy. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: September 29, 2016 Filed under: Entertainment, Mediasphere, Politics | Tags: Barack Obama, Basket, Climate change, Donald Trump, Donald Trump Jr., Hillary Clinton, Jimmy Fallon, Republican Party (United States)
This is a quick tutorial on trumping, or how to do Donald Trump’s hairstyle on long hair. It’s perfect for your Halloween costume!