If you're driving a battery powered car, enjoy the ride, but please......... don't act smug.
Acknowledge the child slaves who helped produce it. Think about the extraordinary volume of water used to mine metals for the car's energy. Think about the environmental toll the battery car imposes on Mother Earth.
When a politician says "Zero Emission Vehicle," referring to an electric car, consider the claim a bald-faced lie. Do not let it go unchallenged. Show up at e-car promotional events and ask them to stop advancing hazardous mining and human rights atrocities as clean and just. Don't be duped by the "green car" myth.
Colorado politicians out-"greening" each other are forcing a "Zero Emission Vehicle" car revolution few consumers want. This summer the Colorado Air Quality Control Commission adopted California's "Zero Emission Vehicle" standard without legislation or meaningful public process. It means electric cars must comprise 5% of all car dealer sales by 2023. We can expect more battery mandates-by-fiat as California enacts them.
In the latest push for electric cars, the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment will partner this week with Denver city and county officials for an event titled "Pass Gas." Between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Thursday, politicians will encourage attendees to "Pass Gas" on Bannock Street, between 14th and Colfax avenues, by test-driving electric cars.
"Shrink your contribution to climate change and help improve the air we breathe by passing gas and driving electric," implores the Denver city/county website.
Anyone who follows this advice should know of a recent warning by Amnesty International, which called out the electric car industry for abuses of human rights and the environment.
"Amnesty International has documented serious human rights violations linked to the extraction of the minerals used in lithium-ion batteries," explained the organization in a written statement in March.
Amnesty found the worst violations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Americans pretending they can save the planet with a vehicular fashion statement is the last thing DRC residents need.
More than 70% of the Congolese people lack adequate access to food; 23% of children suffer malnutrition. Life expectancy is 48 years for men; 52 for women. Infant mortality ranks among the highest in the world. They would benefit from access to more fossil fuels -- energy products the American left hopes to eliminate.
To help phase out fossil fuel production, left-wing politicians want more batteries. The children of Africa and other underdeveloped regions get stuck with the trench work. Amnesty reports of finding "children and adults in southern DRC working in hand-dug cobalt mines facing serious health risks, neither protected by the government nor respected by companies that profit from their labor." Amnesty's research links the mines to "electric vehicle companies."
"With more than half of the world's cobalt originating in southern DRC, the chance that the batteries powering electric vehicles are tainted with child labor and other abuses is unacceptably high," Amnesty reports.
UNICEF, the United Nations Children's Fund, discovered more than 40,000 kids working in battery-car mines in 2014 in the southern DRC alone. The number has likely climbed substantially in five years with the political propagation of "ZEV" cars.
Amnesty's concerns with battery cars don't stop with inhumane mining.
"Most of the current manufacturing of lithium-ion batteries is concentrated in China, South Korea and Japan, where electricity generation remains dependent on coal and other polluting sources of power," the organization reports. "...Meanwhile, rising demand for minerals like cobalt, manganese and lithium has led to a surge in interest in deep-sea mining, which studies predict will have serious and irreversible impacts on biodiversity."
The publication Engineering.com found identical concerns and more when it analyzed battery cars for a 2018 article titled "Will Your Electric Car Save the World or Wreck It?" The article explains the unsustainable and environmentally hazardous process of mining metals for battery cars, adding: "Even if the mining industry were ecologically sustainable, lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries have been known to explode and/or catch fire. Avoiding such incidents, the batteries are extremely difficult to recycle, often resulting in the disposal of a spent, but still toxic and flammable battery in your local landfill."
Though consumers use L-ion batteries in their mobile phones, those gadgets play a comparatively small role in the growing demand for child labor. To compare a cell phone to a battery car, Engineering.com explains, "is like comparing a matchstick to a bonfire." An iPhone weighs a few ounces; Tesla's Model S battery contains 26 pounds of lithium alone, not to mention the assortment of other elements extracted from mines.
The article explains how mining a ton of lithium requires 500,000 gallons of water, which gets tainted with chemicals. Battery car mining consumes up to 65% of the water in some regions, "diverting it from local food production."
"Residents near Chinese graphite mines have remarked on the sparkly nature of air particles, with the dust ultimately contaminating food and water supplies," Engineering.com explains. "In areas surrounding nickel mines, there have been increased rates of deformities and respiratory problems linked to pollution from nickel mining and smelting."
Meanwhile, gasoline and diesel cars support six-figure blue-collar wages for adults (only) working at safe, strictly regulated wellheads throughout Colorado and other parts of the United States. Battery cars move us away from that peaceful arrangement. They push us toward an industry of unregulated child labor and environmental degradation we don't have to look at.
"Pass Gas" with a battery car and appease a politician -- understanding the humanitarian and environmental footprint, which does not pass the smell test.
If I can produce someone who saw John Roberts' penis in college, can we get the Obamacare opinion overturned?
As all MSNBC viewers are well aware, last Sunday's edition of The New York Times ran an excerpt of the book "The Education of Brett Kavanaugh: An Investigation," by Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly, which revives Debbie Ramirez's accusations against the Supreme Court nominee.
Quick reminder: This is NOT the Kavanaugh accuser with two front doors. It is NOT the Kavanaugh accuser whose own father warned that she had psychological problems.
This is the one who didn't remember what Kavanaugh did to her for more than 30 years, until a few lefty friends helpfully reminded her that they'd heard something about it from a guy, who heard it from a guy, whereupon she spent six days "assessing her memories" during the nomination hearings -- and darned if it didn't all come back to her!
What the guy who heard it from a guy heard was that, at a drunken party in a freshman dorm, Kavanaugh unzipped his pants and stuck his penis in Ramirez's face.
Contrary to Pogrebin and Kelly's claim that "at least" seven people "heard about the Yale incident long before Mr. Kavanaugh was a federal judge," this vast array of witnesses includes only one person whose secondhand, rumor-mill story includes both Kavanaugh and Ramirez: Kenneth Appold. (All we know about Appold is that he is a professor at the Princeton Theological Seminary, meaning that he is less likely to believe in God than any person not a professor at the Princeton Theological Seminary.)
The guy Appold claims he heard it from doesn't remember it.
]Are you following how absurd this is?
This is not merely hearsay; it's double hearsay offered by only one person, and he wasn't there, but he heard about it from another person, who denies knowledge of it. And the corpus delecti is something that happened with a group of drunk teenagers 35 years ago.
The main point made by the excerpt is to remind us that truth means nothing to liberals.
Here's the book's big new scoop:
"We also uncovered a previously unreported story about Mr. Kavanaugh in his freshman year that echoes Ms. Ramirez's allegation. A classmate, Max Stier, saw Mr. Kavanaugh with his pants down at a different drunken dorm party, where friends pushed his penis into the hand of a female student."
This story was on the Times' website for more than 24 hours when -- at close to midnight on Sunday -- the paper issued an "Editors' Note" admitting that the victim does not remember it.
I'm not even going to mention that Stier was a lawyer for Bill Clinton, defending him for whipping it out in front of Paula Jones, as governor of Arkansas. Obviously, that's not as serious as doing it as a college freshman.
But could some good reporter -- which excludes anyone in the mainstream media -- look into Stier's undergraduate years? Any embarrassing incidents when he was a freshman? Any rumors or third-hand accounts? While we're at it, can we get Stier's tax returns for the last 30 years? Where's Chuck Johnson when we need him?
Let's consider just the physics of Stier's story.
How can anyone, let alone two or more people, "push" a man's penis into another person's hand? Just how big is Brett Kavanaugh's penis, anyway? Wouldn't a man's penis, if it were able to be "pushed" by one's friends into third parties, need to be erect and at least 3 feet long? Don't push my penis, bro!
The best part of the Times excerpt is the Women's Temperance League tone of the piece.
"(Ramirez's Yale classmates) also had experience with drinking and sexual behavior that Ms. Ramirez -- who had not intended to be intimate with a man until her wedding night -- lacked. ... 'I had gone through high school, I'm the good girl, and now, in one evening, it was all ripped away,' she said in an interview. ..."
If someone from Bob Jones University said that her dreams of marital purity were "ripped away" because she saw a man's penis in college, liberals would never stop laughing."(Kavanaugh) was ... known to attend an annual teenage bacchanal called 'Beach Week,' where the hookups and drinking were more important than the sand and swimming."
It wasn't much of a "beach party" -- if you want to call it that. Instead of wholesome fun, the young people consumed alcoholic beverages and engaged in inappropriate flirting. Everyone said it was inappropriate -- not just us.
Most shocking, from a "Little House on the Prairie" perspective, was this:
"People ... would start to say 'Debbie does ...' playing on the 1978 porn movie 'Debbie Does Dallas.' But Ms. Ramirez didn't understand the reference."
Remind me: Aren't these the same people demanding that we teach kindergartners about "fisting"?
But the "Debbie Does Defamation" authors weren't finished. "(Kavanaugh) came of age during the era of 'Porky's' and 'Fast Times at Ridgemont High.'"
Ha! What do you say, NOW, Trumpsters?
Ruth Bader Ginsburg "came of age during the era of" the Bay of Pigs and the Vietnam War. Can we impeach her?
I'm beginning to suspect that, instead of writing the book, Pogrebin and Kelly screwed around for six months, then pulled an all-nighter the day before it was due. Also, "American Pie" was big!
But half the Democratic candidates for president are demanding Kavanaugh's impeachment on the basis of this sublime idiocy. Trump touched their SCOTUS!
On Sept. 15, The New York Times ran a long Sunday Review article by its reporters Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly in which they promoted their new book, "The Education of Brett Kavanaugh: An Investigation."
The book could be titled "Bitter Tears for Leftists." You knew it was going to happen. Just as they cannot concede that Donald Trump won the presidency, they refuse to accept Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court.
There are men of honor on the left. Former Sens. Joe Lieberman and Jay Rockefeller were at odds with conservatives their entire careers. But neither stooped, nor would they ever stoop, to something like this, working with people such as these.
These are not just liberal activists. They are leftist agitators who specialize in the art of character assassination. They are radicals for whom truth means nothing. Only results matter.
And they work at The New York Times.
The article was a sob story touting Deborah Ramirez, whose accusation was originally championed by The New Yorker's Jane Mayer, who smeared Clarence Thomas back in 1991. It was titled "Brett Kavanaugh Fit in With the Privileged Kids. She Did Not."
The Times opinion section signaled its malignant intentions when it put out this bizarre tweet: "Having a penis thrust in your face at a drunken dorm party may seem like harmless fun. But when Brett Kavanaugh did it to her, Deborah Ramirez says, it confirmed that she didn't belong at Yale in the first place." It was deleted within minutes, and The Times confessed it was "poorly phrased."
Find your target. Toss a hand grenade. Watch it explode and blow him to pieces. Then claim it was "poorly aimed."
This exercise is happening with the press, including The New York Times, with such regularity it is no longer shocking.
The Times reporters hoped to restore Ramirez's shattered credibility by uncorking a new allegation that sounded very much like hers. They had found someone who claims to have witnessed Kavanaugh expose himself at a (SET ITAL) second (END ITAL) alcohol-soaked party at Yale.
It didn't matter whether there was no more proof than the first discredited allegation. Just as the networks did before, they leaped into action on Sunday night and Monday morning, touting a new allegation of sexual assault against the newest Supreme Court justice. Five Democratic presidential candidates immediately jumped on Twitter to insist Kavanaugh should be impeached.
Except it isn't evidence. This is recycled garbage.
Follow the wording: "We also uncovered a previously unreported story about Mr. Kavanaugh in his freshman year that echoes Ms. Ramirez's allegation. A classmate, Max Stier, saw Mr. Kavanaugh with his pants down at a different drunken dorm party, where friends pushed his penis into the hand of a female student."
This is not an allegation. They didn't write that Stier "states he saw" or "alleges he saw" the indecent exposure. Stier "saw" it. What proof did Stier offer that would make this unchallenged fact?
They didn't say they talked to Stier but that they "corroborated the story with two officials who have communicated with Mr. Stier," two anonymous sources who say that he says he saw.
That's it. That's enough for the left to insist a good man be destroyed -- again. So why didn't Stier come forward himself? Stier is the CEO of the Partnership for Public Service, which strives to appear nonpartisan ... although he gave $1,000 to Barack Obama for president, according to OpenSecrets.
Speaking of agendas, nowhere did The Times note that Stier was a lawyer at Williams & Connolly in the 1990s and defended then-President Clinton during Ken Starr's independent counsel investigation. Kavanaugh was on Starr's staff at the time.
And then, as if this ridiculous charade couldn't get any worse, it was pointed out that Pogrebin and Kelly's article omitted a crucial finding that appears in their book. It turns out Stier's storied victim ... never said she's a victim! So The Times had to run a correction that said: "The book reports that the female student declined to be interviewed and friends say that she does not recall the incident. That information has been added to the article."
Even that correction is slippery. "(D)oes not recall the incident" keeps the accusation alive. How about the student "has no idea what the hell they're talking about"?
They can't even excerpt their own book correctly? Who thought this junk was ready for publication in a newspaper -- or a book?
Conservatives on Twitter were blunt. Sen. Ted Cruz, for example, said, "If a high-school freshman did this on a school paper, he'd get an F."
Fox News' Brit Hume summed it up perfectly: "This smear was disgusting the first time around. This attempt to revive it is beyond disgusting and speaks to the dishonesty of leading organs of the mainstream media. They are corrupt.
L. Brent Bozell III and Tim Graham
When you consider how much the Democratic establishment loathes President Donald Trump, it's just plain sad to watch a Democratic primary that has yet to offer up a front-runner who has Democrats truly jazzed about the election.
Insiders are waiting for former Veep Joe Biden, 76, not so much to stumble, as to stumble and not be able to get up afterward.
At 73, Trump is no spring chicken, but he exudes a vitality Biden lacks.
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, 78, is a lovable scold to his die-hard supporters, and he's genuine. So why aren't Democrats more enthusiastic about him?
Elizabeth Warren, 70, is a great campaigner who gained strength during the long slog that she began as the Democrat with a dubious claim to being Native American. And still, the party apparatus has not coalesced behind her.
And below that top-tier of Nestors are a pack of middle-aged opportunists who stand out for their willingness to say anything to generate buzz.
"Hell, yes, we're going to take away your AR-15, your AK-47," former Texas congressman Beto O'Rourke crowed in response to a question.
An August Fox News poll shows that two-thirds of Americans support an assault weapons ban. No doubt many Democrats see such polls and hence see no problem with a candidate calling for such a ban.
So they don't realize that O'Rourke's comment probably prompted countless gun owners to run out and buy the guns they hate. And they certainly don't think about the carnage that would ensue if the government actually tried to take those weapons from otherwise law-abiding owners' cold, live hands.
"I frankly think that clip will be played for years at Second Amendment rallies with organizations that try to scare people by saying Democrats are coming for your guns," said Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., to CNN.
The ABC-led team of debate moderators didn't help. There was no pointed follow up. No mention of the fact that a year ago after the host told O'Rourke he owned an AR-15, O'Rourke told "The Chad Hasty Show": "If you own a gun, keep that gun. Nobody wants to take it away from you."
"The Democrats and the media, it's as if they're one," Trump observed during a speech at a House policy retreat in Baltimore delivered in the same time slot.
Univision anchor Jorge Ramos challenged Biden: "Are you prepared to say tonight that you and President Obama made a mistake about deportations? Why should Latinos trust you?"
Ramos offered no recognition that Obama was enforcing federal law -- which is part of the job description. His question was based on the assumption that it was wrong to enforce the law. And he presumed to talk for all Latinos.
Biden should have defended Obama for doing his job -- and rightly discouraging Central American migrants who would not qualify for asylum from crossing the border. In a different election year, Biden probably would have defended enforcing immigration law instinctively.
Instead, Biden denied that the Obama administration put migrants in cages or separated families.
Politifact rated Biden's claim as "false." The fact-checking organization noted that while Trump has a tougher approach to family separation, the Obama administration did put children in chain-linked enclosures. That is, Biden was gutless and wrong.
In the words of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2014: "We have to send a clear message: Just because your child gets across the border, that doesn't mean your child gets to stay. We don't want to send a message that's contrary to our laws or (it) will encourage more children to make that dangerous journey."
That sort of commonsense thinking went out the window during a 2016 presidential debate when, under Ramos' questioning, Clinton changed her position and pledged not to deport undocumented immigrants who don't have a criminal record. The tail wagged the dog. That's how the Democrats' got a field with no clear star.
Over and over again, I hear Democrats say that Trump's tenure in the White House is untenable, that they'll do whatever it takes to win back the White House. Well, anything but stand up for positions they held five years ago. Anything but try to understand what the middle thinks. Anything but allow a debate on Fox News.
Debra J. Saunders
Like all Americans, I've been deeply moved and horrified by the recent spate of mass shootings. Surely, I thought, there must be some commonsense gun regulations that could put an end to the carnage -- red-flag laws, longer waiting periods, age limits, something!
Leaving aside the usual suspects, who are rushing to the microphones to demand the immediate confiscation of all guns, liberals are appealing to us to come together in good faith and formulate a plan to keep guns out of the hands of these monsters, using fair process and common sense.
The only problem is that no one on their side believes in good faith, fair process or common sense. Here's the reality: We don't trust the other side, nor should we.
Americans used to be able to rely on two bulwarks to protect us from stupidity:
1) Legal process -- The genius of our founders was to strictly limit the power of capricious, and often armed, government officials and to create a government of laws that made major changes difficult, but not impossible.
You want a new amendment to the Constitution? Get 38 states to ratify it, two-thirds of the Senate to vote for it, the president to sign it. There -- you've changed the constitution. You oppose a law? Run for office, put a proposition on the ballot, donate to a campaign, persuade your fellow citizens -- or move to a different state. 2) Common sense -- We also used to be able to assume that a basic reasonableness undergirded our society, flowing across generational lines, political divides, racial differences and policy disputes. Until the 1970s, for example, federal courts mostly enforced actual legal and constitutional rights on the books. The other branches of government tended to perform their roles in good faith -- or at least not in obvious bad faith.
Whether you were a Taft Republican or a JFK Democrat, you believed that we had a border, that people here illegally would be processed according to law, that there were two sexes, that free speech was a hallmark of our nation, and that a kid could dress up as a cowboy or Indian for Halloween without being branded a "racist."
Naturally, therefore, my first instinct was to assume that our shared respect for process and decency remained. But I now realize that's wrong.
In 1994, nearly 60% of Californians voted to deny government services to illegal aliens. Proposition 187 was approved 59% to 41%, with the votes of 56% of African Americans, 57% of Asians -- and even a third of Hispanics. It won in every county of California except San Francisco. In heavily Latino Los Angeles County, Proposition 187 passed by a 12-point margin.
Liberals said: No problem, we'll take the case to a left-wing, Carter-appointed federal judge who will overturn the will of the voters! District Court Judge Mariana Pfaelzer held that the perfectly constitutional law was "unconstitutional" and, today, California taxpayers are forced to spend billions of dollars on food, housing, education, health care and prison cells for illegal immigrants.
In 2008, Californians voted against gay marriage. Again, this was California -- not South Carolina -- and voters decided, 52% to 48%, that "marriage" is not between a mailbox and a chimpanzee, a rhododendron and refrigerator, but only between a man and woman.
Liberals said to themselves: No problem. We'll just find a gay district court judge to overturn the vote. This will be a piece of cake.
They also said, Not only are we going to reverse the vote, but we will name and shame the people on the other side (except African Americans, who voted overwhelmingly for Proposition 8, much to the embarrassment of progressives). People found to have donated to the marriage initiative would be driven out of their jobs, fired from high-tech firms they founded, and chased from Mexican restaurants.
Apparently, everyone born in the last 5,000 years, right up until June 26, 2015, was a hateful bigot.
Since the 1980s, nearly every time Americans have been allowed to vote on illegal immigration, they've opposed it -- denying government services to illegal aliens, denying bail to illegal aliens, imposing English language requirements, allowing police to request documentation from suspected illegal aliens and on and on and on.
All of these democratically achieved results were met with rage, insults, prejudice -- and often a court overturning the vote.
This culminated in 2016, when Americans decided to make an utterly preposterous candidate not a mayor or congressman, not even a governor, but president of the United States based on his promise to deport illegal aliens and build a wall. We know how that turned out. (Don't weep for Brexit voters. Britons have only been waiting three years to get what they voted for. We've been waiting decades.)
It's not the underlying issue in any of these examples that's the problem -- it's the flouting of the democratic process. I'm not saying: We trusted you and got a bad result. I am saying: We trusted you, but you abandoned the Constitution and the law to get the result that you could not win honestly.
At least we still have our common sense! Surely, we can count on the next generation to believe in free speech down to the marrow of their bones. They clearly understand that college campuses, whatever else they are, must always be bastions of open inquiry and far-reaching debate. They obviously recognize the wisdom and majesty of the Constitution's Electoral College.
Nope! None of that is true.
Actress Debra Messing is collecting names of Trump supporters for a new Hollywood blacklist. Armed and masked left-wing brown-shirts patrol the streets of Portland, Oregon, beating up suspected Trump supporters. I tweet, "It's a nice day," and 2,000 people respond that they hope I will die.
We're dealing with people who are not honest brokers. We can no longer have any expectation of good faith, sound process or common sense.
In this environment, it's preposterous to believe that we can start putting asterisks on the Second Amendment and hope that it will survive.
We can't entrust our liberties to your dirty hands.
Florida’s “last, best hope” to save Apalachicola Bay’s multi-million dollar shellfish industry will play out Oct. 17 before a federal judge in Albuquerque, N.M.
Senior U.S. Circuit Court Judge Paul J. Kelly, appointed by the U.S. Supreme Court in August 2018 to serve as a “special master” to oversee Florida’s 2013 lawsuit against Georgia, said the hearing would be nearly two months earlier than originally scheduled.
The lawsuit is the latest chapter in the “Tri-State Water Wars” dating to 1990 between Florida, Georgia and Alabama over water allocations from two river systems – the Alabama-Coosa-Tallapoosa basin, between Georgia and Alabama, and the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint (ACF) basin that spans all three states.
In 2013, Florida filed its lawsuit with the U.S. Supreme Court requesting it “equally apportion” water in the ACF basin, which originates near Lake Lanier and flows south to the Panhandle, by capping Georgia’s water usage at roughly 1992 levels.
In November 2014, the Supreme Court accepted Florida’s complaint and the case was reviewed by a “special master,” a post that often is appointed in jurisdictional disputes to hear evidence and issue a recommendation in cases that will go before the high court.
In 2017, Maine attorney and former U.S. Circuit Court Justice Ralph Lancaster – appointed special master by the Supreme Court an unprecedented four times before passing away in January at age 88 – determined Florida had not proven its case “by clear and convincing evidence” that imposing a cap on Georgia’s water use would benefit the Apalachicola River.
However, after hearing oral arguments – based on more than 7 million pages of documents, 30 subpoenas, 30 expert reports and 100 depositions – in January 2018, the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that Florida’s lawsuit should be revisited. Last August, it named Kelly as the new special master in hearing the case.
While Florida’s attorneys maintain booming Atlanta’s "negligent" water conservation policies have contributed to the diminished flow of ACF waters into the Panhandle, they cite agricultural water use in southwest Georgia as the primary culprit.
The ecological stress from low river flows and saltwater intrusion have decimated the oyster and shrimp industry in Franklin County’s Apalachicola Bay, which generate millions of dollars for the region and employs thousands, Florida states.
Georgia claims it has been a responsible stewart of the ACF’s headwaters and that it needs the water to sustain metro Atlanta’s 5.6 million people and to meet the demands of farmers in the state’s southwest corner.
Capping its tap at 1992 levels would have a catastrophic impact on the state’s economy, Georgia insists.
Both states will each receive 45 minutes to summarize arguments and answer questions from Kelly. Florida will then be given time for a rebuttal since it is the plaintiff in the case.
When he was named special master last August, Kelly said he would not accept new evidence or expert testimony and that he’ll work off the record built by proceedings since 2016 and, of course, the 7 million pages of documents, 30 subpoenas, 30 expert reports and 100 depositions already compiled in the case.
Kelly is expected to issue a recommendation sometime in early 2020 to the Supreme Court, which could choose to hold another hearing or accept Kelly’s recommendation.
Although Alabama is not a party in Florida’s lawsuit against Georgia, the three states have been engaged in litigative tussles over water since, at least, 1990, when the Lake Lanier project in Georgia was authorized by Congress as an impoundment for water that could be equally apportioned.
Battling Florida over ACF water was a campaign issue in Georgia’s hotly contested gubernatorial race won by Republican Brian Kemp over Democrat Stacy Adams.
In his last days as governor, Republican Nathan Deal lamented his failure to reach water-use agreements with Alabama and Florida – and the $50 million the state has spent in litigating – were among the biggest regrets of his eight-year tenure.
On the campaign trail, however, Kemp vowed to double-down on winning the court case, saying a compromise would leave “hardworking Georgians high and dry.
The Center Square
Politicians have no idea what gun control is all about. If they did, they would not want more “gun laws”. There are already “gun laws” for every criminal act they can think of, using a gun!
There are laws that cover any crime with a gun you can think of. Let me put it a different way…you cannot commit a crime with a gun that isn’t already a crime.
I am talking about acquisition, transportation, use, misuse, sale…any illegal act with a gun is already a crime. So what’s the problem…?
We do not enforce the laws we have! That’s the problem!
Allow me to give an example; prosecutors will not “add on” Federal Gun charges that add mandatory prison time because “they” have decided that enough is enough and jails and the courts are overloaded and more time doesn’t increase the chance that this “bad” guy will see Jesus and stop the crimes he specializes in.
There is/are law(s) in the National Firearms Acts that demand “add on” mandatory, non-judicial discretionary time for committing a crime “with a gun that traveled in interstate commerce, at some time during its life”. In other words, if a bad guy commits a crime using a gun, after he serves his full sentence for that crime, if charged with this Federal Gun violation, he will get additional time Federally, added to his “State time” that cannot be served concurrent (at the same time) and MUST be served after he serves his full sentence, without any good time behavior allowed. If he gets 2-4 for Burglary with the gun and is charged as such, he has to serve the 4 and then the gun time will start. Next time it all goes higher. To prove that the gun traveled in interstate commerce, the government need only prove that it was “born” in say Connecticut and the defendant had possession in New York. There, a Judicial Assumption the gun traveled interstate! But Federal prosecutors, Democrats and Republicans won’t charge the Federal Gun violation. Any who say they will are liars. I…we …argued MANY times to charge the add on gun crime time but they would not, as the time would be too severe?! That mandatory time, by the way, increases with each crime on his rap sheet!
But you see, there are too many morons (politicians) who say ,”all that time is racist” because only “black people” are going to jail, and only black people are getting add on time and prisons are overloaded with blacks. Well the reason is …90% of those crimes are committed by black people!
That’s why Democrap politicians want to put more white people in jail…to make jails more even!
The simple minded will say about gun laws, “Why does anyone need an AR 15 to hunt?” Well, in the FIRST place…our right to keep and bear arms in the Second Amendment never mentions the word “hunt” or phrase “to hunt”. It simply says that the right to keep and bear arms may not be infringed. The purpose of the Second Amendment is clear… to prevent Tyranny and to protect our Constitutional Republic…NOTHING ELSE. Someone please read the Second Amendment Michael Moore-on!
The Second Amendment was NEVER intended to help shop for groceries, then or now! You see Mr. Sanders, Ms. Warren, Mr. Booker and the rest of you Democrap Candidates…the 2nd Amendment is intended to prevent people like you Democrap/Socialist/ Tyrants from becoming the Rulers you all want to be. The only one of you who even comes close to leveling with the voters about his Commie beliefs and intentions is Sanders, but even he lies about being a full blooded, red, commie, pinko…he’s a “Democratic/Socialist”, instead! See if you can find that definition online! Maybe we should ask him to do a DNA test like Warren!
Democrap Politicians will never admit that they understand that because they want to “Rule” and not “Lead”, which our Rule of Law prohibits and Amendments like #2 help to enforce it!
Politicians calling for more gun control have NEVER enforced ANY gun laws and have no idea what there is, how they apply, and what works. Most of the cases I worked for 6 1/2 years in the NYO involved guns and about half of the rest of my career involved guns. I was never able to charge the add on gun charges in either the Southern or Eastern District of NY and only once in the Western District for a full auto used in a Bank Robbery!!
If that’s true, and it is, why do all the left want more gun control and the elimination of “assault rifles”?
The answer is — they want to overthrow our government and take away our Rights under our Rule of Law and MUST take our guns in order to force us to submit to their superior knowledge…you know…what’s good for us, they know best!?
From the grip of my cold, dead hands will you pry my AR …!
It’s budget time again, and it’s obvious our national debt will continue to go up. I’ve concluded that, in spite of their claims to the contrary, most of our political “employees” in Washington don’t consider it a big deal. They sure don’t seem to be doing something about it. But how could this be? Perhaps they realized that our borrowed national debt is almost immaterial compared to “what we owe.” What? How can that be? It doesn’t make sense!
There’s something called “principles of accounting” that define how any organization reports their earnings, financial status, related measurements and disclosures. If comprehensive financial statements were available for the United States government (which there isn’t), they would include a measurement for our financial obligations i.e. the things we know we have to pay in the future. And I’m sorry to report that our national debt is but a small fraction of our total obligations.
The national debt represents the amount already borrowed for payments we’ve made. The U.S. government’s “regulatory accountants,” the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), as well as other regulatory bodies, require businesses and non-profits to report total obligations. If it’s good for the goose (public and private companies, and non-profits), it’s good for the gander (the U.S. government). Let’s try to piece together at least some of this information.
The current national debt is about $23 trillion, and growing, but that doesn’t even come close to measuring all of our future obligations. We need to add the unfunded obligations of Social Security, Medicare Parts A,B, and D, federal employee benefits, veterans benefits, and some other programs. Some argue that government trust funds, such as those for Social Security and government employee retirement plans, will mitigate the problem by providing their own funds necessary to pay their obligations. Remember that those trust balances are just IOUs from the federal government, not deposits or cash! To ignore the portion of the federal debt that is represented by these inter-government IOUs, would be like you paying off a car loan with a home equity loan and thinking you’ve reduced your debt. It doesn’t work that way!
If we could add up all the elements of U.S. unfunded obligations which would be reported using General Accepted Accounting Principles, as required of corporations by the SEC and others, we would arrive at a number that’s really scary! Unfortunately, the exact amount of unfunded obligations is not routinely determined, but estimates range from about $125 trillion to over $200 trillion. Therefore, our total obligations is in a range from about $150 trillion to over $220 trillion. That’s very imprecise, but whatever the actual amount is, the national debt we worry so much about is only a fraction of the obligation total.
Some would focus on reducing “waste, fraud, and abuse” to solve a major part of the problem. That would be a “good thing” but we’re so far “in the hole,” accomplishing that would be like the proverbial “drop in the bucket.” If you want a tax on the rich to solve the problem, you’re out of luck. If we took all the wealth away from the richest Americans, we couldn’t even pay off the national debt, and the entire unfunded liability would remain untouched. If that were done, there would be no more rich people to tax, nor could we depend on them for capital investment. That would be dismal.
The problem is so huge, it’s hard to even image such large amounts of money. No wonder our politicians may have “relaxed” on the relatively small amount of our national debt. I can’t believe I wrote “small amount,” but it is small compared to our total liabilities. The CBO recently stated: “The prospect of large and growing debt poses substantial risks for the nation and presents policymakers with significant challenges.” The first step in finding a solution would be to admit there’s a problem. Then let’s restructure Social Security, and other main drivers of the unfunded portion of obligations, prioritize and reign in other budget items, and then just keep fixing.
Nalani Quintello quit ''American Idol'' to be in the U.S. Air Force – that's how excited she was to join up. Now, she's serving her country as the lead singer of Max Impact, the service's six-member rock band. Its mission? To travel the world honoring our vets, connecting with communities and inspiring patriotism through music. It's something she never saw coming as a kid, but now she can't imagine doing anything else.
You’re from a military background. How did that shape your upbringing?
My sister is also in the Air Force, and my dad was in the Army before I was born. He was stationed in Germany, where he met my mother, who was full German. I was born in Germany and raised there for about eight years, then my family ended up moving back to Florida, which is where I spent the bulk of my life. I actually had to learn how to speak English because I had a terrible German accent. So, I grew up bilingual, which was really cool.
You tried out for season 14 of 'American Idol' shortly after graduating high school. What was that experience like?
I had started college and was performing at 12 local nursing homes, restaurants and festivals on the side. But I wanted to do something more with it, and I knew of a couple people who tried out. I grew up watching the show, so I wanted to see where it would go. I got to audition in front of Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez and Harry Connick Jr., and luckily, I got three yesses. I went to Hollywood and experienced the much-dreaded group rounds, where you have to find a group late in the day and then stay up all night rehearsing the song they choose for you. Then the next morning, you have to perform it. I made it past the group round and the solo performance, then got to come back home for a little bit before flying back out for the showcase round, which is right before the live rounds.
The Air Force came calling when you made AI's Top 48, so you dropped out to join Max Impact. Was it a difficult decision, and how did people react to it?
I couldn't do both because of contractual issues, so it was a very easy decision for me. I knew right away that's exactly what I wanted to do – to serve my country. I just never thought I'd be able to do it in the capacity in which I'm doing it now, as a member of the Air Force band. My family already knew what my decision was going to be. The ''American Idol'' producers were shocked, but they ended up granting me a waiver to leave. They were actually really cool and understanding about it. So, I ended up going straight from AI to basic military training, which was pretty crazy.
What would you say is your underlying mission as an Air Force musician? And what are your typical duties?
Our mission is to honor vets, inspire patriotism, connect with others and be an icebreaker through music. It's a universal language that brings people together. We stay pretty busy year-round. In the summer, we perform at the D.C. Air Force Memorial regularly, as well as National Harbor and the U.S. Capitol. On a normal duty day, we rehearse for about two hours, then we go do our other duties because we are a self-run organization. For example, our drummer, he's in charge of operations. He schedules the day-to-day logistics. I’m the marketing manager, so anything that has to do with advertising is on me.
Air Force Rock Band ‘Max Impact’
We got to headline an NFL Patriots vs. Giants game at MetLife Stadium. The stadium was sold out, and we actually got to headline the halftime show with one of our original songs that I co-wrote with our guitarist. To me, that was by far the most memorable – to be able to perform at a huge stadium in front of thousands of people was like a dream come true. To be able to represent the U.S. Air Force wearing the military uniform was a prestigious honor.
What is your favorite part about what you do?
After our performances, we take time to greet people and listen to their stories. That's my favorite part – the response from the audience members. We also get a lot of good feedback on our social media sites. One woman wrote us on Facebook and said she was dealing with cancer and really depressed, but when she listens to our original music, it gives her the power and strength and will to keep going. That's when I realized that what I do truly matters.
What advice would you give to other musicians thinking about joining the service?
Work extremely hard for your goals, and don't let the fear of reaching your dreams prevent you from trying. As cliché as that sounds, that's been the motto I've lived my life by. I've been told ''no'' so many times, and had I given up after every no that I'd received, I never would have achieved any of my goals. Instead, I used all of the ''no's'' as fuel and motivation to keep working harder.
To the Editor,
There is Chick-fil-a across the street from my office and every day the line extends far into the street, to the point of disrupting traffic. It is the most packed fast food place I have ever seen, often having a line five to tens longer than a McDonalds less than a block away and I also live in a liberal city even! LMAO
Needless to say, the majority of the population finds a chicken sandwich far more important than some liberals being offended.
I can't really think of any conservatives boycotting and protesting in front of liberal businesses. If a liberal doesn’t like something then no one should like it or frequent the place, if a conservative doesn’t like something, they don’t do it or frequent the place.... That’s the difference between the two sides.
Besides, if you are eating chicken your helping save the planet from cow farts! AOC would be proud of you!
David C. Atherton III