Fox News correspondent Bill Hemmer interviewed U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr in El Salvador during a visit to address the crisis on the U.S-Mexico border, MS-13, drug trafficking and human trafficking.
During the interview Bill Hemmer asked about AG Barr’s ongoing review of DOJ and FBI activity during the 2016 election.
BARR: “I’ve been trying to get answers to the questions and I’ve found that a lot of the answers have been inadequate and some of the explanations I’ve gotten don’t hang together, in a sense I have more questions today than when I first started.”
HEMMER: “What doesn’t hang together?”
BARR: “Some of the explanations of what occurred.”
HEMMER: “Why does that matter?”
BARR: “People have to find out what the government was doing during that period. If we’re worried about foreign influence, for the very same reason we should be worried about whether government officials abuse their power and put their thumb on the scale.”
Attorney General William Barr has appointed a U.S. attorney to examine the origins of the Russia investigation and determine if intelligence collection involving the Trump campaign was “lawful and appropriate,” a person familiar with the matter told The Associated Press on Monday.
Barr appointed John Durham, the U.S. attorney in Connecticut, to conduct the inquiry, the person said. The person could not discuss the matter publicly and spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity.
Durham’s appointment comes about a month after Barr told members of Congress he believed “spying did occur” on the Trump campaign in 2016.
Something rather remarkable just happened in Idaho. The state legislature opted to—in essence—repeal the entire state regulatory code. The cause may have been dysfunction across legislative chambers, but the result is serendipitous. A new governor is presented with an unprecedented opportunity to repeal an outdated and burdensome regulatory code and replace it with a more streamlined and sensible set of rules. Other states should be paying close attention.
The situation came about due to the somewhat unconventional nature of Idaho’s regulatory process. Each year, the state’s entire existing body of regulations expires unless reauthorized for an additional year by the legislature. In most years, reauthorization happens smoothly, but not this year.
Instead, the legislature wrapped up an acrimonious session in April without passing a rule-reauthorization bill. As a result, come July 1, some 8,200 pages of regulations containing 736 chapters of state rules will expire. Any rules the governor opts to keep will have to be implemented as emergency regulations, and the legislature will consider them anew when it returns next January.
With Sen. Bernie Sanders introducing a new “Medicare for All” bill this month and several other Democratic presidential candidates co-sponsoring it, health care is once again a top campaign issue. The Democratic Party’s Socialist wing has hijacked the health care debate, and a closer examination of Medicare for All reveals its grim prognosis.
This plan is co-sponsored by four other senators running for president: Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Cory Booker. It represents a radical change in how Americans pay for and receive health care. Medicare for All ends private health care insurance, granting the federal government total control. Employer-based health care will disappear.
Ironically, Medicare will also vanish as it is rolled into this massive new program. The plan’s authors have attempted to disguise this fact by calling it Medicare for All, but that is one gigantic lie. They claim you will be able to visit any doctor or hospital, get care whenever you want, and not need to worry about cost, because everything will be covered.
1. How will we pay for this?
No one has specifically answered this question, but everyone’s taxes will increase — and possibly even double.
2. Will Medicare for All be free for patients?
There is no such thing as “free” health care. Confiscating the wealth of all millionaires and billionaires wouldn’t even come close to paying for this plan. The only way to make it work is by limiting the demand.
3. What happens to seniors who currently have Medicare?
Despite the intriguing sound of Medicare for All, this plan is just the opposite — Medicare for None. The $700 billion from the current annual Medicare budget will be redirected, and seniors’ benefits will change. Bureaucrats will make decisions regarding who receives treatments, something that also happens in England.
4. If I am unhappy with Medicare for All, can’t I just get care elsewhere?
No. This plan outlaws all private health care. So, if you had to wait six months for an operation in America, your only other option would be leaving the country.
5. At least I can still see my doctor, right?
Doubtful. Your doctor might not be around to take care of you. More than 50% of the doctors in this country are over 55 years old. This plan would slash physician reimbursement. Many older doctors will not tolerate that outcome, choosing instead to leave medicine altogether.
One of the hardest lessons for young, idealistic, and educated people to learn when they come to Washington — and some never learn it — is that nobody is running things. Sure, they know how to hold a press conference or write a law or conduct a study. But no person or group of people has the power to impose their will on society. There are just too many chefs making the soup.
After Barack Obama got his stimulus passed on the promise that there were millions of “shovel-ready jobs,” the stimulation never quite materialized as planned, and the shovels tended to stay in the shed. Obama later insisted that the theory behind the stimulus was right, but “the problem is that spending it out takes a long time, because there’s really nothing — there’s no such thing as shovel-ready projects.”
Makes it harder to get the guns back than to take them in the first place. “Due Process” my ass.
Colorado’s law, approved by Democratic Gov. Jared Polis, allows family, household members or law enforcement to petition a court to have guns seized or surrendered based on a showing that someone poses a danger under the “preponderance of the evidence,” a civil standard which means that the defendant is more likely than not to be a threat.
“In other words, there is just over a 50/50 chance of accuracy,” van Beek wrote, noting that someone’s guns could be seized even without a mental health professional making a determination of any kind. “Like the flip of a coin. Couldn’t that apply to just about anything a person does?”
A subsequent court hearing could extend a gun seizure up to 364 days, and gun owners can only retain their guns if they meet a burden of demonstrating by “clear and convincing evidence” — a much higher standard — that they are not in fact a threat. Gun owners, van Beek said, are “guilty until proven innocent” under this framework.
I think if the demoncraps and anti-Trumpers who went along with this are not taken so heavily to task and figuratively tarred and feathered for these shenanigans so that no one will even think of doing it again, we will rue the day. If these crap-for-brains tactics stand, one day , when a REAL tyrant comes to office and uses the weaponized bureaucracy given him by vindictive petty politicians “it won’t be pretty” barely applies
Right after the 2016 election, Green Party candidate Jill Stein—cheered on by Hillary Clinton dead-enders—sued in three states to recount votes and thereby overturn Donald Trump’s victory in the Electoral College. Before the quixotic effort imploded, Stein was praised as an iconic progressive social justice warrior who might stop the hated Trump from even entering the White House.
When that did not work, B-list Hollywood celebrities mobilized, with television and radio commercials, to shame electors in Trump-won states into not voting for the president-elect during the official Electoral College balloting in December 2016. Their idea was that select morally superior electors should reject their constitutional directives and throw the election into the House of Representatives where even more morally superior NeverTrump Republicans might join with even much more morally superior Democrats to find the perfect morally superior NeverTrump alternative.
When that did not work, more than 60 Democratic House members voted to bring up Trump’s impeachment for vote. Trump had only been in office a few weeks. Then San Francisco billionaire Tom Steyer toured the country and lavished millions on advertisements demanding Trump’s removal by impeachment—and was sorely disappointed when he discovered that billion-dollar-fueled virtue-signaling proved utterly bankrupt virtue-signaling.
When that did not work, during the president’s first year in office, the Democrats and the media at various times sought to invoke the 25th Amendment, claiming Trump was so mentally or physically impaired that he was not able to carry out the duties of president.
At one point, congressional Democrats called Yale University psychiatrist Dr. Bandy X. Lee to testify that Trump was unfit to continue.
In fact, to prove her credentials, Lee edited The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump that offered arguments from 27 psychiatrists and other mental health experts.
In May 2017, acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein met secretly in efforts to poll Trump cabinet members to discover whether they could find a majority to remove Trump from office—again on grounds that he was mentally unbalanced. According to McCabe, Rosenstein offered to wear a wire, in some sort of bizarre comic coup attempt to catch Trump off-guard in a confidential conversation.
When that did not work…………………..
Will the Left nod and keep still, if Republicans attempt to remove an elected Democratic President before his tenure is up? Are appeals to impeachment, the 25th Amendment, the Emoluments Clause, the Logan Act, and a Special Counsel the now normal cargo of political opposition to any future elected president?
Is it now permissible in 2020 for Trump’s FBI director to insert an informant into the campaign of the Democratic presidential nominee?
If Joe Biden is the 2020 nominee, will the Trump Justice Department seek FISA warrants to monitor the communications of Biden’s campaign team—in worries that Biden son’s business practices in the Ukraine had earlier compromised Biden who had intervened on his behalf by threatening to cut off aid to Ukraine?
Will they investigate Biden’s propensity to hug and kiss under-aged girls?
Will Trump’s CIA director contact foreign nationals to aid in spying on Biden’s aides?
Will National Security Advisor John Bolton request that the names of surveilled Biden campaign officials become unmasked as a way of having them leaked to the media?
Will Trump hire a British ex-spy to gather together rumors and gossip about Biden’s previous overseas trips and foreign contacts, especially in the Ukraine, and then see them seeded among the Trump CIA, FBI, Justice Department, and State Department?
Is that the sort of country we have now?
America over the last half century had been nursed on the dogma that the Left was the guarantor of civil liberties. That was the old message of the battles supposedly waged on our behalf by the ACLU, the free-speech areas on campuses, and the Earl Warren Court.
The final irony? If the CIA, FBI, and DOJ have gone the banana republic way of Lois Lerner’s IRS and shredded the Constitution, they still failed to remove Donald Trump.
Trump still stands. In Nietzschean fashion what did not kill him apparently only made him stronger.
Maybe they’re sick and tired of the crime, disease, crap and addict’s used needles in their neighborhoods foisted off on them by the city.
Well-heeled residents in an upscale San Francisco neighborhood have launched a crowdfunding drive to keep a new homeless shelter out of their back yard.
The GoFundMe campaign — called “Safe Embarcadero for All” — was launched earlier this month after Mayor London Breed proposed a 200-bed shelter along the coast of San Francisco Bay, according to Fox News.
“The planned location for Mayor Breed’s #megashelter is home to thousands of families, visited by millions of tourists and at the center of some of San Francisco’s most iconic events – including the San Francisco Marathon, San Francisco Giants stadium and on one of the busiest bicyclist paths in the city,” reads the posting by the opponents.
The drive has raised more than $60,000, more than half its stated $100,000 goal, which will be used to pay attorney Andrew Zacks to represent the “Not in my back yard” residents.
One of the contributors, who remained anonymous, chipped in $10,000 to the effort.
Several contributors — including banking bigwigs, professors and authors — also have donated money to Democratic political groups, including thousands of dollars to the Democratic National Committee, according to a Fox News review of records.
A rival campaign in support of the project attracted a $5,000 donation from GoFundMe itself — with the effort so far garnering almost $33,000 in donations, surpassing its goal of $30,000.
The mayor slammed the opponents.
“People want us to address the challenges on our streets and help our unsheltered residents into housing, and I am committed to doing the hard work to make that happen,” Breed said, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.
“But it’s incredibly frustrating and disappointing,” she added, “that as soon as we put forward a solution to build a new shelter, people begin to threaten legal action.”
When Barack Obama implemented his unilateral amnesty for illegal aliens who claimed to have entered this country before the age of sixteen, the illegally amnestied illegals qualified for many benefits.
One of these were FHA loans.
FHA loans are government-backed mortgages meant for poorer Americans unable to qualify for normal mortgages. Democrat abuse of the FHA helped lead to the Great Recession and in the years afterward, FHA insured loans hit losses of $70 billion. By 2012, the FHA was $16 billion in the hole and had to be bailed out. The delinquency rate for FHA loans is still more than three times higher than normal loans, and depending on the period, have hovered between 8% and 14%. Time to bring in the illegal aliens.
When Obama illegally implemented DACA, a program exempting certain illegal aliens from government action, they were also allowed to apply for FHA loans. How many illegal aliens obtained FHA loans?
In December, a letter from three Senate Democrats claimed that HUD barred “approximately 800,000 individuals approved for DACA from FHA-insured mortgage loans”. This refers to the total number of DACA illegal aliens and it’s unknown how many of them have obtained FHA loans in past years.
Ellie Mae’s millennial tracker estimated that the average size of an FHA loan to millennials is $186,454. Potential exposure to illegal alien mortgages could then climb as improbably high as $150 billion.
It’s unknown how many illegal aliens have taken out FHA loans, but some media stories have cited loan officers for whom illegal alien FHA loans represent a significant percentage of their business.
The Trump administration has applied the brakes to this avalanche of taxpayer-insured mortgages to illegal aliens. The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) had begun notifying lenders that the FHA was no longer in the illegal alien mortgage business. The reasons were common sense. DACA illegal aliens, or in media spin, DREAMERs, were not legal residents and weren’t being legalized.
Under Obama, FHA rules had been bent so far backward that people who were not only non-citizens, not only non-permanent residents, but weren’t even legally here, were having taxpayers guarantee their mortgages. Not only hadn’t the Democrats learned anything from the Great Recession, they were determined to make the irresponsible behavior of the FHA a decade ago seem sober and sensible.
And they aren’t giving up.
The December letter by Senator Menendez, who had recently been on trial for corruption charges, Senator Booker, on whose watch the $100 million poured into Newark public schools dissipated, and Senator Cortez-Mastro, who had been accused of taking dirty money, claimed to be, “appalled that the Trump Administration would exploit a federal government program to deny Dreamers an opportunity of owning their own home.” But it was the Democrats who had exploited a federal government program meant for poor Americans to benefit not only foreigners, but illegal aliens with no right to be here.
The letter by the three Senator Democrats falsely claimed that President Trump was targeting a “portion of the American public”, when in fact illegal aliens are not part of the American public. They demanded, “sound and unambiguous legal reasoning” for the move. The sound and unambiguous reasoning would be that illegal aliens are not legally resident in the United States and therefore do not qualify for loans.
The illegal alien mortgage business, built on the backs of American taxpayers, is obviously profitable. But it’s also a silent nuclear weapon threatening mass destruction of the economy in case of deportations.
The more illegal aliens end up with FHA loans, and as those FHA loans are turned into Ginnie Mae Mortgage Backed Securities, deporting DACA illegal aliens would risk mass defaults on FHA loans which are backed by American taxpayers. Quite a few Ginnie Mae bonds are being held by Japan and China.
That’s why HUD’s move of stopping the flow of FHA loans to illegal aliens is so vital and important.
Because they’ve been shown to be used more as political tools by whoever can use the power given to them for their own aggrandizement as opposed to doing the job they were formed to do.
This week, special counsel Robert Mueller released his long-awaited report on alleged collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government to impact the 2016 election. His conclusion: no collusion. It’s been apparent for quite some time that Mueller would end up here — every indictment has been based on an ancillary crime, not the chief question of election conspiracy. Nonetheless, the final result came as a bombshell.
That’s because for two years, the mainstream media have treated Trump-Russian collusion as a reality. Facts would eventually arrive to fill in the gaps in the narrative. Surely, Trump’s presidency would crumble when the deus ex machina, the Mueller report, arrived.
But that didn’t happen. And so the media are left with unending egg on their faces, having suggested continuously for years that Trump was illegitimately elected, and that his campaign had engaged in treasonous activity to prevent the rightful president, Hillary Clinton, from assuming office.
That narrative found support in leaders from the Democratic intelligence community. Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., of the House Intelligence Committee spent years camping outside CNN headquarters in a pup tent, ready at a moment’s notice to suggest access to secret information that would certainly take down the president. Former CIA Director John Brennan accused Trump of treason, standing on his resume to do so. Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper stated that Watergate “pales” beside allegations of coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia. Former acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe suggested that Trump could be a Russian cat’s paw. Former FBI Director James Comey implied that Trump had fired him for nefarious reasons, not because Trump was angry with Comey for failing to announce that Trump wasn’t under investigation.
Our intelligence leadership, in other words, humiliated themselves.
Meanwhile, in Chicago, Cook County prosecutors agreed to drop charges against alleged hate crime hoaxer Jussie Smollett, who alleged that he was beaten by two white men in the middle of the night on the streets of Chicago. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel called the dropped charges a “whitewash.” Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson bashed Smollett’s defense team, explaining, “they chose to hide behind secrecy and broker a deal to circumvent the judicial system.”
Why have key institutions betrayed their initial mission? Mission creep. The job of the media is to objectively cover stories, not to drive narratives. The job of the intelligence community is to diligently follow evidence, not to follow its cognitive bias. The job of the state’s attorney is to prosecute crime, not to play politics.
Without defined roles, our institutions crumble. Treating institutions as mere tools to be wielded in pursuit of some higher goal leads to the destruction of those institutions; they become little more than weapons, aimed by those in power. That’s dangerous stuff. We should be able to trust our press. If we can’t, then we can no longer base our republican decision-making on a common set of facts. We should be able to trust our intelligence community and our prosecutors. If we can’t, then we can’t support granting them the power they require to protect us.
But protecting institutions has taken a back seat to do-goodism. “Objective” journalists see themselves as crusaders; political members of the intelligence community see themselves as protectors; prosecutors see themselves as emissaries of social justice rather than as part of a broader, more objective system of determining guilt and innocence. Institutions only mean more than the people who comprise them when the people who comprise them value the institutions more than their own politics. That’s being lost. The result is the continued atomization of our society.
Federal rulemaking should be open and transparent. This outcome is supposedly ensured by the Administrative Procedure Act of 1946 (APA).
Across federal agencies, the rules should be the same for everyone. They should be open for public comment while still in draft form and publicly available once finalized. Moreover, every industry and every individual should get the same answer to the same question. Anything less is not rulemaking: it is arbitrary government.
As conservatives have anxiously pointed out for years, the rise of the administrative state has corrupted the rulemaking process. Enabled by an overly-deferential judiciary and a supine Congress have allowed agencies to move beyond drawing up rules to implement carefully written laws passed by Congress. Now, regulators take block grants of Congressional power to make their own laws as they see fit. This is incompatible with the continued existence of the United States as a constitutional republic.
So conservatives rightly cheered when President Trump, in one of his first acts in office, issued a “2 for 1” executive order, requiring the federal government to cut two rules for every new rule it issued. They cheered again when former Attorney General Jeff Sessions reined in administrative rulemakers in the Department of Justice. His Nov. 16, 2017, memo prohibited them from using public guidance documents as a substitute for rule-making under the APA and required to work within the authority delegated by Congress.
All of this was entirely for the good. But in the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the ATF, it has gone entirely wrong.
The Sessions memo was backed up in January 2018 by a new Department of Justice policy that “prohibits the use of agency guidance documents in affirmative civil litigation in a manner that would convert such guidance into binding rules of conduct.” The ATF understood these directives to mean that it had to stop issuing public, industry-wide guidance or opinions—the very documents that could ensure uniform compliance in industry with existing regulations. When this author reached out to ATF for comment, the ATF stated that it was of course abiding by the former Attorney General’s memo, and that “we do not interpret the law.”
As a result of its understanding, the ATF now operates almost exclusively by private letters. It has not published a ruling on firearms or explosives since July 2017, and its only notifications on proposed rule-making since December 2017 relate to the politically-charged (and politically-motivated) pursuit of bump stocks.
This was not the outcome the Sessions memo envisaged. The memo makes it clear that “not every agency action is required to undergo notice-and-comment rulemaking…. [A]gencies may use guidance and similar documents to educate regulated parties through plain-language restatements of existing legal requirements or provide non-binding advice on technical issues.” The point of the memo was to prevent department rule-makers from using public guidance documents to evade the rulemaking process, not to stop them from issuing any public guidance at all. Education is not interpretation.
The ATF’s approach means that each industry member that asks a question about how to apply or interpret the rules gets its own private answer, an answer that none of its competitors knows about and which does not serve as a legal precedent. It means that no one in the industry has any certainty, not even the firm that asked the question in the first place, because the ATF can always change a decision it made in a private “no-action” letter later on. And it means that the ATF has almost complete discretion in how it regulates, because it is creating no precedents.
According to Jared Febbroriello, a lawyer working with firearms and defense companies “It is disconcerting that any agency that is tasked with interpreting the law might seek to restrict the public’s ability to access their interpretations but given the potential for criminal prosecution and the heightened risk for the loss of life, liberty and property that is associated with firearms one would think that ATF would be embracing complete transparency. Sadly, they are not.”
“Notice how it is starting to morph from “climate change” to just “climate”. It first changed from global warming to climate change, but lately I’ve noticed most of the references are no longer to “climate change deniers” but are now just “climate deniers”.”
Damian Carrington, Environment editor
Tue 26 Mar 2019 17.30 AEDT
Exclusive: chair of Elders group also says fossil fuel firms have lost their social licence
The denial of climate change is not just ignorant, but “malign and evil”, according to Mary Robinson, because it denies the human rights of the most vulnerable people on the planet.
The former UN high commissioner for human rights and special envoy for climate change also says fossil fuel companies have lost their social licence to explore for more coal, oil and gas and must switch to become part of the transition to clean energy.
Robinson will make the outspoken attack on Tuesday, in a speech to the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew in London, which has awarded her the Kew International Medal for her “integral work on climate justice”.
“The evidence about the effects of climate change is incontrovertible, and the moral case for urgent action indisputable,” she will say.
“Climate change undermines the enjoyment of the full range of human rights – from the right to life, to food, to shelter and to health. It is an injustice that the people who have contributed least to the causes of the problem suffer the worst impacts of climate change.”
“The Elders” are a group of self important former United Nations leaders and other high profile international figures who seem to think you should do what you are told.
Mary Robinson stops short of saying what she thinks should be done about those “malign and evil” climate deniers, but I think we get the idea.
(In other words, Military A-#1 Spy)
There needs to be just a bit of reading between the lines here but make no mistake, what James Clapper is doing here is sending out a warning flare that if he’s going down there will be a lot of others he intends to take with him—including a certain former President of the United States. (Really pay attention to how much he emphasizes Obama’s personal involvement in the process from beginning to end.) This is a Deep State operative clearly rattled by what may soon be coming his way…
But here at MILESFORTIS, you can get it FREE.
Data Review Contradicts Hickenlooper Claim on Colo. Gun-Check Law
Law had little impact on number of background checks
A review of Colorado data on gun background checks contradicts recent claims by former Colorado governor and Democratic presidential hopeful John Hickenlooper.
Hickenlooper has repeatedly touted his signature on a universal background check measure. He has said the law was important because background checks in Colorado have prevented people from purchasing guns and that the system in place beforehand didn’t require checks on half of all gun sales.
“In a state like Colorado with 5.5 million people, there were 38 people in 2012 who—and we only got to half the gun purchases—but there were 38 people convicted of homicides who tried to buy a gun and we stopped them,” Hickenlooper told The Electables podcast last month.
In 2013, then-governor Hickenlooper signed two new gun-control measures passed by the state general assembly in response to the Aurora Theater shooting, with one of those measures requiring so-called universal background checks.
The bill, HB 1229, required nearly all sales between two private persons to go through a background check. Practically speaking, this meant the two persons engaged in a used-gun sale had to go to a federally licensed gun store and pay the store to conduct the same kind of check it would as if the purchasing individual were buying the gun from the store.
Hickenlooper didn’t respond to questions about how many of those denied by the background check system in Colorado were false positives and how many were prosecuted for illegally trying to purchase firearms. He also didn’t respond to questions about his claim that the universal background check law would double the number of background checks in the state. However, data collected by the state in the run up to HB 1229’s implementation and more than a year afterwards show that claim is factually inaccurate.
To assess the impact of HB 1229 on gun checks in Colorado, the Washington Free Beacon looked at data from the Colorado Bureau of Investigations (CBI), originally obtained by the gun-control group Everytown for Gun Safety. Those data, which are monthly between July 2012 and December 2014, provide raw totals of background checks against sales by licensed gun dealers, by private individuals at gun shows, and by private individuals elsewhere.
Before the passage of the universal background check measure in 2013, Colorado had already required background checks on private sales at gun shows—CBI had been tracking those sales. HB 1229 expanded that requirement to nearly all other forms of private sales. At that point, CBI began tracking those sales as well.
Contra Hickenlooper’s claim that the lack of universal checks was leading to half of sales being uncovered, data show the overwhelming majority of sales pre- and post-HB 1229 were clearly attributable to purchasers at already-covered, licensed gun dealers.
A closer look at private sales further reveals HB 1229’s minimal effect. Total private sales remained roughly constant following its implementation. In December 2012, before the law’s implementation, 1,940 checks were performed on private sales while December 2014, after the law’s implementation, saw only 1,446 private checks. In fact, while the number of background checks of private individuals rose, the number for gun show sales fell, leading to a net effect of essentially zero.
And anti-gun proggies want the CDC to get $50 million for more ‘research’.
According to the CDC’s most recent figures, somewhere between 31,000 and 236,000 people were injured by guns in 2017. That range, which represents the confidence interval — the high and low ends of a range of estimates that probably contains the real number, whatever that number is — is almost four times wider than the one given in the agency’s 2001 estimate.
“When I looked at the 2017 numbers, I went, ‘Oh, my god,’” said David Hemenway, the director of the Harvard Injury Control Research Center. “You just can’t use those numbers.”…..
Last year, FiveThirtyEight and The Trace, a nonprofit news organization covering gun violence in America,1 reported that the rising trend in the number of nonfatal gunshot wounds in the CDC’s estimates was out of step with trends reported by other public health and criminal justice databases, which found flat or declining numbers of these injuries. The CDC’s most recent estimate — nearly 134,000 injuries — suggests that the upward trend in its data is accelerating, with injuries jumping over 57 percent between 2015 and 2017.
But that number is suspect, in part because the agency sources its data from a small number of hospitals: just 60 in 2017, according to data obtained in a public records request by The Trace and FiveThirtyEight. Drawing data from such a small pool means that a single hospital that treats a disproportionate number of gun injuries has the potential to drastically skew the entire estimate.
Geez. Bureaucrapacy level 10.
John H. Michel looked at a sheet of paper in front of him and read off the next number on a list to a few dozen people in the dimly lit conference room.
“43899665?” He asked. “Do we have Mr. or Mrs. 43899665 in the house?”
After a few moments, when no one stepped forward, Michel went on to the next applicant for a “wear and carry” handgun permit.
The list was long for last week’s meeting of the Maryland Handgun Permit Review Board in Crownsville, and Michel and his fellow board members had yet to hear from paramedics, an insurance broker, a real estate agent and others.
A man wearing a lightweight jacket stepped forward to make his case for why he should be allowed to carry a handgun at all times.
For decades, the board operated with little scrutiny, handling a few dozen cases a year. But the board grew more permissive in recent years under appointees of Gov. Larry Hogan, routinely overturning or loosening Maryland State Police decisions on permit applications, and its caseload has grown. Hundreds of gun owners now appeal their denials each year.
That’s drawn scrutiny from the Maryland General Assembly, where senators refused last month to confirm the appointment of three members to the board and introduced legislation that would abolish the board. If the bill becomes law, people would appeal instead to a state administrative law judge.
“We’ve seen this permit review board continually overturning Maryland State Police recommendations,” said Sen. Pamela Beidle, an Anne Arundel County Democrat who is sponsoring the bill to eliminate the handgun board. “I have great respect for the Maryland State Police and I think it is wrong that we are overturning their recommendations so often.”
A spokeswoman for Hogan was noncommittal about the governor’s position.
“If making changes to this board is a priority for the legislature, the governor will certainly consider any legislation that reaches his desk,” said Shareese Churchill, a spokeswoman for Hogan.
In total, 22,177 Marylanders have handgun permits, according to state police. The state police received about 4,400 new applications and 5,400 renewal applications last year — and denied about 500 of those applications.
States Increasingly Police Family ‘Thoughtcrimes’
As homeschooling rapidly grows, so too are state-level efforts to “oversee” families.
Oregon, Washington state, and even Iowa are trailblazing another assault on constitutionally protected individual rights. The state legislature in Oregon is currently mulling over a bill that “directs Oregon Health Authority to study home visiting by licensed health care providers.” The bill contends that home visits are “necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health and safety.”
There’s a similar scheme being conjured up in Washington. In January, Gov. Jay Inslee (now a 2020 Democrat presidential contender) declared: “My budget would also offer universal home visits. This gives every new parent the opportunity to get a visit from a nurse during the first few weeks back home with their newborn to share important information and build confidence.”
“Iowa Democrats are also attempting to gain oversight of families, specifically those of homeschoolers,” The Resurgent’s James Silberman reports. “IA HF272 would mandate quarterly ‘health and safety visits’ to homeschool families by school district officials. The bill states that these visits would be with the consent of the parents but also specifies that parents can be overridden if a judge determines there is probable cause for home inspection.”
PJ Media columnist Paula Bolyard astutely observes, “As someone who has been involved in the homeschooling movement for more than 20 years, I have seen many attempts to increase the oversight of children taught at home by requiring home visits by a teacher or social worker. … Anytime a state or locality has tried to draft legislation requiring home visits for homeschooled children, the immediate response has always been, ‘What are they going to do next, require inspections for children from birth until they enter school?’ The answer to that, of course, is yes. That has been the plan all along.”
This is statism, pure and simple. The Daily Signal this week relayed the story of a parent who said, “I was shocked when my 13-year-old daughter told me she was really my transgender son.” The parent added, “Where did she get the idea she was transgender? From a school presentation.”
This is precisely why more and more families are pulling their kids from public schooling and increasingly homeschooling. And while their reasons for doing so are more than justified, statists are ensuring that no age and no home is off limits when it comes to regulating thoughtcrimes.
My name is Brian Bissett. I reside in Howard County, Maryland, and I am the author of two peer-reviewed books on Data Analysis. I am writing today OPPOSING the following bills which are currently being considered by the Maryland State Legislature.
All of these proposed laws will enjoin honest citizens from freely exercising their right to utilize firearms for lawful purposes in various ways by actions such as requiring an expensive license to purchase a long gun, prohibiting possession of certain common firearms, and eliminating any civilian oversight of State Police decisions pertaining to handgun permits.
My opposition to additional gun control legislation is not an emotional reaction but is rather based on a careful analysis of Baltimore City crime compared to its sister cities in terms of population, wealth and proximity. I have also analyzed firearms crime in Baltimore City both before and after the implementation of the Firearms Safety Act of 2013.
ALL DATA IS FROM THE FBI UNIFORM CRIME REPORT, THE BALTIMORE CITY POLICE DEPARTMENT (OPEN BALTIMORE CRIME DATA), AND THE GIFFORDS LAW CENTER (A GUN CONTROL GROUP.)
The charts depicting crimes in Baltimore City contained herein only show Crimes COMMITTED WITH FIREARMS. Robberies are only robberies by means of a firearm, not a knife or other implement. Assaults and Murders are only those assaults or murders committed with a firearm (nearly always a Handgun.)
The strength of Gun Laws is subjective, so I used the Gifford’s Gun Report (an Anti-Firearms Organization) to denote the relative strength of gun laws for the States and Cities compared with Baltimore.
When examining the graphs, it is important to have an understanding of the Giffords’ Grades which range from “A” to “F”.
A state which does background checks on all new gun sales and issues carry permits to people who undergo training and have no criminal record will get an “F”.
A grade of a “B” or “A” is not possible without doing most of the following:
Banning civilian possession of many firearms in common use.
Banning standard capacity magazines.
Forbidding citizens from obtaining a permit to carry a firearm for self-protection without proving a need to do so.
Having a red flag law which authorizes confiscation of personal firearms with delayed due process.
The “C” grade is a pivotal point on the scale, as it marks a transition from checking and training to prohibitions. Most of the states in the country have a “D” or “F” grade.
The trend that emerges is that once firearms laws go beyond requiring a background check for purchase and safety training, robberies, assaults, shootings, and murders with firearms rise. This trend was not just present in Baltimore, but the “like” cities it was compared with.
The broadening revelations of the lawless, almost putschist excesses of the Comey-McCabe FBI and elements of the Justice Department and the Brennan-Clapper intelligence services invite serious contemplation of how close the United States came to being a country where regime change might be plausibly and self-righteously attempted by what in undemocratic countries is generally known as the secret police.
It is fantastic to contemplate such a thing in the United States, which is fundamentally prouder of nothing than of its Constitution and the immense place that the system created by that Constitution and maintained these 230 years by recourse to interpretation and reassertion of it has played in the unprecedented rise of America from a loosely connected group of colonists numbering only a few million at independence to the overwhelming preeminence of the U.S.A. at the end of the Second World War. That preeminence has been substantially maintained since.
For at least 60 years I have heard high American officials announce that the United States is not a “banana republic.” Of course it is not, and never was. But there is a complacency about America’s status as a society of laws that is both unbecoming and unjustified. As many judges, lawyers, and commentators have noted, the level of prosecution success in criminal cases is over 95%, 97% of those without a trial; these, and the proportion of the population that is incarcerated, are totalitarian numbers.
Congressional investigations where there is no lawyer-client privilege, the ease of alleging and gaining convictions on charges of dishonest responses to the police, as well as press trials long before a defense has even been filed (as in the Jussie Smollett case, where the chief of police of Chicago has been garrulously babbling out the prosecution evidence); all of this is a Star Chamber. None of it would be admissible in any other serious common-law country, such as Great Britain, Canada, Australia, or Ireland.
Let’s start at the beginning with a British judge serving under Queen Elizabeth, who wrote, “Thomas Hawtry, gentleman, was served with a subpoena to testify his knowledge touching the cause in variance; and made oath that he hath been, and yet is a solicitor in this suit, and hath received several fees of the defendant: which being informed to the Master of the Rolls, it is ordered that said Thomas Hawtry shall not be compelled to be deposed” (Berd v. Lovelace Anno 19 Eliz. 1576-77).
Cut to 2018 when the left sacrificed this sacred principle of Western civilization in the name of getting Trump. The New York Times titillated Trump-haters with the public airing of a recording of a discussion between Donald Trump and Cohen concerning the payment of two women who were essentially blackmailing then-candidate Trump. The FBI seized the recording during a raid of Cohen’s office. The New York Times did not say where it obtained the recording.
Subsequent to the release of the recording, the president chose not to assert attorney-client privilege. Those familiar with attorney-client confidentiality understand that the public release deprived him of any meaningful opportunity to make that choice. Nobody can un-hear the recordings.
It’s bad that an attorney maintained secret audio tapes of conversations with his client. Such information has a way of ending up in the wrong hands, and secretly making these tapes impairs the spirit of the attorney-client relationship. But it’s really bad that the American Civil Liberties Union posted an article cheerleading the raid. The government doesn’t need a cheerleader, and certainly not from the ACLU.
The socialist teachers there alongside the socialist politicians infesting our schools and governments understand that to have compliant serfs, instead of adamantly independent citizens, requires complete control in indoctrinating multiple generations of complacent sheep.
cf. the bawling children who were herded by those kind of teachers into Senator Finestein’s office demanding she listen to their econut foolery.
Do you really know what your children are being taught in your schools? Are you supporting the right of parents who will not put up with socialist indoctrination and have taken their children away from that influence to teach them themselves?
Two recent bills proposed by state legislators in Illinois and Iowa reveal a disturbing perspective on parental rights that’s becoming more prevalent in our country: the belief that parents cannot be trusted to care for their children.
The Swiftly-Defeated Illinois Bill
In Illinois, a little over a week ago, Democratic state Rep. Monica Bristow introduced House Bill 3560. That bill sought to amend the school code to require the Child Protective Service unit of the Department of Children and Family Services to investigate the home of a child being homeschooled “to ensure there is no suspected child abuse or neglect in the home.” The proposed law would have applied to every child being homeschooled, even when there was no reason to suspect neglect or abuse.
The response of homeschooling families was swift. “We live in such a ‘guilty until proven innocent’ culture,” Amy Kwilinski, an Illinois homeschooling mom of six (including four with special needs) told The Federalist. “It seems like our culture is headed toward a mistrust of homeschooling, which might send us dangerously toward a German-like ban,” Kwilinski added, noting that she plans to contact all of her elected officials.
Other homeschooling parents apparently felt similarly, because within days of Bristow’s bill being referred to the Rules Committee, the sponsor filed a motion to table the bill. In less than a week, HB 3560 was dead.
Scott Woodruff, senior counsel with Home School Legal Defense Association told The Federalist that Bristow’s “bill struck a raw nerve among homeschool families.” “They don’t want to be treated like criminals. Who wants to be investigated for child abuse for absolutely no other reason than choosing to homeschool your child?” Woodruff said. “It also would have been a fabulous waste of the limited time that child protective workers have to protect kids who are in trouble,” Woodruff added.
A Different Bill Attempts to Surveil Families In Iowa
While the Illinois bill is essentially dead, a similar bill remains under consideration in Iowa. Late last month, representatives in Iowa introduced a bill that would require school districts to conduct “quarterly home visits to check on the health and safety of children” being homeschooled. The bill specified that “home visits shall take place in the child’s residence with the consent of the parent, guardian, or legal custodian and an interview or observation of the child may be conducted.”
Unlike the Illinois bill, which would have forced parents to allow the government to investigate their homes and children before they could homeschool—likely an unconstitutional condition—the Iowa bill at least recognized that such inspections require the consent of the parent or guardian. However, the following section stated that “if permission to enter the home to interview or observe the child is refused, the juvenile court or district court upon a showing of probable cause may authorize the person making the home visit to enter the home and interview or observe the child.”
This probable cause provision raises several red flags. First, the proposed bill does not specify what there must be “probable cause” of. The most reasonable interpretation would be “probable cause” of neglect or abuse, which leads to the second point: The law already allows the government to obtain a court order to enter a home upon a showing of “probable cause” of neglect or abuse, so why the need to amend the code regulating homeschooling?
There is no need. Rather, the Iowa bill would provide school officials the ability to bully parents by demanding entry, knowing many homeschoolers would not realize they could refuse to consent. For those parents who know their rights and exercise them, they risk retaliation when the school districts later review the objecting parents’ homeschool curriculum. Even worse, the school officials might present unfounded claims of neglect to a court which, given the normal ex parte (without notifying the parents of the court filing) proceedings, may authorize the government’s invasion of the family’s home…..
But the mere proposal of these bills should serve as a wake-up call to all parents of the trend among policymakers to view them as the enemy. While these two bills focused on homeschooling, the same perspective on parental rights—that the state knows best, parents be damned—can be seen in legislative branches throughout the country.
For instance, in Indiana, last year the legislature gutted a law that would have required schools to provide parents access to materials used for instruction on sexual activity and gender identity and to obtain their consent before “teaching” kids about gender identity. South Dakota’s legislature recently killed a bill expressly protecting a parent’s right to refuse to consent to health care “treatment” for a child that would promote the child’s belief that he is a she, or vice versa.
The aggressive move to replace a parent’s love, care, guidance, and decision-making with whatever whim the experts of the bureaucratic state currently profess is a disturbing and growing trend, and it threatens all parents—not merely those homeschooling their children.
JUNEAU — Gov. Mike Dunleavy has abolished Alaska’s climate change strategy commission and has removed a procedural roadblock for several major construction projects, including the Knik Arm Crossing.
Administrative Order No. 309, issued Friday, rescinds seven orders issued by former Gov. Bill Walker, including one from Oct. 31, 2017, that established the state’s climate change strategy and the Climate Action for Alaska Leadership Team. That team drafted a climate change policy and formally submitted it to the governor’s office in September. The plan has not been implemented.
The governor’s office sent letters to the climate change team on Friday saying their work for the task force “has ended.” The state website for the team, including the draft strategy it created, has been removed. The developments were first reported by Alaska Public Media on Saturday.
The Facts About Mass Shootings Support Gun Ownership, Not Gun Control
Democrats shouldn’t add more gun control laws to the books when the shootings in both Parkland and Aurora could’ve been prevented by existing policies.
Maybe the politicians should simply get rid of these ineffectual laws period.
By painting the tragic Parkland shooting as a failure of gun control, however, Pelosi disregards the indisputable fact that the shooter’s rampage was enabled by years-long, system-wide failures of policy and personnel.
Andrew Pollack, the father of shooting victim Meadow Pollack, is on a campaign to hold those who failed the Parkland victims accountable. This includes the resource officer and deputies whose inadequate response allowed the shooting spree to continue for 11 long minutes, the FBI officials who ignored a tip about the shooter’s intentions just over a month prior to the attack, the Broward County superintendent whose “Promise” program kept students’ criminal activities from being reported to police, and the school officials, mental health providers, and officials from the Broward Sheriff’s Office who ignored a series of red flags, not to mention murderer’s lengthy history of violence and mental health issues.
These Tragedies Happened Despite Legal Barriers
Judging by the sheer number of pending legal claims against Broward Country Public Schools (103 as of December 2018), Pollack is not the only parent of a victim or survivor to find that fault extends beyond the shooter and his weapon. The families of two Parkland victims are also filing suit against the manufacturer of Cruz’s AR-15, and the store where he purchased it.
On Friday, just one day after Pelosi threatened future gun control initiatives, America experienced another preventable and horrific shooting in Aurora, Illinois. After he was fired from his job, Gary Martin used a pistol he unlawfully possessed to shoot employees in his workplace. Martin killed six employees, and wounded five of the police officers who responded to the scene before he was killed by police.
As a convicted felon, Martin should not have possessed a weapon. When applying for an Illinois Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card in January 2014, he lied about his previous felony conviction for aggravated assault. After he purchased his pistol in March, Martin also applied for a concealed carry permit. When the fingerprinting process revealed Martin’s criminal history in Mississippi, police turned down Martin’s application, revoked his FOID card, and informed him that he must relinquish his weapon within 48 hours. Instead, Martin kept the pistol.
If Democrats impede law-abiding Americans from arming themselves to protect their fellow citizens, and themselves, then the only people with access to weapons will be those who purchase them illegally, with criminal intent.