Category Archives: featured opinion

Obama: The Fool On The Hill

There is no doubt in my mind that Obama is the worst president in my lifetime, even worse than Carter. Since I am not a presidential historian, I don’t know if he is the worst president ever, but he just might be. Over the past few years of Obama’s reign I have called him many names, names I cannot say in public, but I am sure most of you have done the same as well. But now I realize the man is just a plain fool.

In a February 4th interview on CNN Obama had the nerve to say; “I Saved the American economy, made the US stronger, more prosperous, safer, more influential than it was when I took office.” Now if this doesn’t prove that Obama is living in La,La land, I don’t know what will. His statement proves only one thing that Obama is truly delusional, he lives in a bubble surrounded by yes men who pamper him and tell him what he wants to hear, but that is how he lived his entire life.

It is a fact that Obama was raised a Muslim, he was surrounded and taught by people who did not like America much and that has stuck with him his entire life. So it should be no surprise to anyone that his sympathies are on the side of Muslims and his speech at the National Prayer Breakfast proves it.

Going back one-thousand years he said, “And lest we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place – remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ.”  It is obvious that he is trying to justify in some distorted way, the atrocities that Muslim terrorists are doing today. Robert Jeffress, the pastor of First Baptist Church of Dallas said, “When Christians act violently they are  acting in opposition to the teachings of their founder, Jesus Christ, They cannot cite a single verse in the New Testament that calls for violence against unbelievers. On the other hand, radical Islamists can point to a number of verses in the Koran calling for Muslims to “crucify the infidels.”

What kills me about Obama’s speech is the Left is always criticizing Conservatives for living in the 1950’s, yet Obama has to go back one-thousand years to justify his thinking. Can it be that Obama had a Freudian slip when he said, “We are summoned to push back against those who would distort our religion for their nihilistic ends.” “Our religion,” did he just admit that he is a Muslim?

The Crusades were a response to hundreds of years of Muslim aggression; it seems that Muslims have not changed in a thousand years, but Christians have. Obama did not mention radical Islam or jihadists or Islamic extremists, why can’t he admit what the rest of the world knows? Because he still believes that by being nice to our enemies and not hurting their feelings and not offending them will make them stop beheading and burning people.

Two days after news emerged that ISIS had burned a captive Jordanian pilot to death, the king of Jordan unleashed a bomb attack, when an American was beheaded, Obama went out and played a round of golf with some of his friends. Obama gives Iran everything it wants on the march to nuclear weapons and invites the murderous Muslim Brotherhood to the White House, but won’t meet with Republicans or the prime minister of Israel. The Beetles wrote a song called “The Fool On The Hill” one verse went like this. “But nobody listens to him they can see that he is just a fool” Obama is truly the biggest fool on Capitol Hill.

“What Kind Of Society Are We Leaving Our Kids” Available here.

Obama-jester-fool-clown-62875364781This is one man’s opinion.

Obama Defies Logic In Refusing to Identify Our Enemies

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isis-obama-shhhhhhWhy is it so hard for this administration to call Islamic extremists what they are? Instead they parse and mince their appellations in every conceivable way to avoid identifying them as such. For that matter, how can the president maintain any semblance of credibility when he illogically avers that the Islamic State is not Islamic? By refusing to acknowledge, at least publicly, the enemy that has unleashed its destructive tactics against humanity, the administration appears incompetent, indecisive, and impotent against those who have declared jihad against America and the west.

It’s critical to make a distinction between the faith of Islam, and Islamic extremism. Islam, as a religion, is faith-based, while the sectarian-defined extremism of the Wahhabist movement, or Salafi, is more of an Islamo-Fascist political movement. Even though it has its theological roots in Islam the religion, they are more of a politically ideological sect within Islam that goes far beyond what is reasonable in their interpretations of key scriptures in the Koran and the Hadith or sayings of Mohammed.

Abdallah Al Obeid, the former dean of the Islamic University of Medina and member of the Saudi Consultative Council, confirms that this is politically ideological, rather than sectarian. He calls this extremism a “political trend” within Islam that “has been adopted for power-sharing purposes.” He says it cannot be called a sect because “It has no special practices, nor special rites, and no special interpretation of religion that differ from the main body of Sunni Islam.”

Lt. General Thomas McInerney, who serves on the Iran Policy Committee, said a few years ago in an interview, “Islamic extremism is an ideology just like Fascism and Communism, and it must be fought in much the same way. The West has not acknowledged this and consequently we have not educated our population that it is an ideology rather than a religion. This is confusing people because of our tolerance for the diversity of religion.”

unityThe rest of the world seems to have divested itself of the ineffable “Islamic extremism” label. After the horrendous murders of a dozen employees of the Charlie Hebdo paper in Paris last month, more than a million people, including 40 presidents and prime ministers, showed up for a solidarity rally against Islamic extremism. It was, as the New York Times reported, “the most striking show of solidarity in the West against the threat of Islamic extremism since the Sept. 11 attacks.”

No one from the Obama administration attended, even though Attorney General (AG) Eric Holder was in Paris at the time. The New York Daily News ran a Front Page headline, sending President Obama a message in type large enough he could have seen it 220 miles away in Washington, “You let the world down.” The (UK) Daily Mail headline read, “America snubs historic Paris rally.”

Nidal Hasan - "I am a Soldier of Allah."

Nidal Hasan – “I am a Soldier of Allah.”

Isn’t it interesting that the AG that has called us a “nation of cowards” for not having a discussion on race would capitulate to the political correctness of not having a discussion (or demonstration) against Islamic extremism? It appears downright cowardly. But it is his Dept. of Justice that still classifies the 2009 Fort Hood shooting as “workplace violence,” even though the shooter, Nidal Hasan, describes himself as a “Soldier of Allah,” and has petitioned to be classified as a citizen of the Islamic State. But Holder was undoubtedly just following the directives of his boss who declared a couple years ago at the United Nations, “The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet.”

Even in denouncing the Islamic State burning to death a Jordanian pilot this week, the president revealed the great lengths he will go to maintain ambiguity in identifying our enemies. In a taped comment in the White House, Obama said, “It also indicates the degree to which whatever ideology they are operating off of, it’s bankrupt.” Really, Mr. President. “Whatever ideology they are operating off of?” Are you the only one on the planet who doesn’t know where the jihadist ideology originates?

c22foThe matter became only more convoluted by White House press secretaries this week. ABC News’ Jonathan Karl asked Deputy Press Secretary Eric Schultz what the distinction was between terrorists and the Taliban. Karl asked, “You say the United States government does not give in to demands [and] does not pay ransom. But how is what the Jordanians are talking about doing any different than what the United States did to get the release of [Bowe] Bergdahl — the releasing prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay to the Taliban, which is clearly a terrorist organization?”

Shultz stammered in his obfuscating response, “As you know, this was highly discussed at the time. And prisoner swaps are a traditional, end-of-conflict interaction that happens. As the war in Afghanistan wound down, we felt like it was the appropriate thing to do…I’d also point out that the Taliban is an armed insurgency; ISIL is a terrorist group. So we don’t make concessions to terrorist groups.”

obama-islamSo the Taliban is an “armed insurgency” and not a terrorist group. What a relief it is to finally learn that the organization that harbored and protected Osama bin Ladin was not a terrorist group! I really thought they were, especially after their massacre of 130 school children in Pakistan last month! Maybe they’re just not “JV” enough to be considered outright “terrorists.”

I’m not sure that we could expect anything different from a cadre of ideological academics who had no real-world experience prior to running the sole remaining world super power. For as Dr. Lyle Rossiter explained in his book “The Liberal Mind,” the single greatest symptom of the liberal mindset is detachment from reality. And the proof that this administration is severely afflicted with it is most clearly exemplified by their inability to identify our enemies as Islamic extremists.

Associated Press award winning columnist Richard Larsen is President of Larsen Financial, a brokerage and financial planning firm in Pocatello, Idaho and is a graduate of Idaho State University with degrees in Political Science and History and coursework completed toward a Master’s in Public Administration. He can be reached at [email protected].

And the Islamists Remained…

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Conjuring images of the dying who had clawed at the dank walls of the gas chambers of Auschwitz, Jordanian Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh grabbed at his head, screaming out in agony as he fell to his knees, his body burning, his brain slowly cooking. His Daesh (Islamic State) captors had abruptly abandoned disingenuous negotiations with the Jordanian government for his release, their hostage having actually been killed many days before. Instead, they decided to record al-Kaseasbeh’s purposeful immolation. Having drenched him in accelerant, the savages lit the liquid fuse that set the young lieutenant ablaze. As he writhed, they filmed, indignant to his agony; his humanity. Barbarity for the purpose of terrorist propaganda had been achieved.

Just a month earlier, tens of thousands had taken to the streets in major Middle Eastern cities in support of Islamofascist assassins who slaughtered the staff at Charlie Hebdo. Turkey’s president, Recip Tayyip Erdogan, publicly intimated that the attacks in Paris were justified due to the magazine staff’s transgressions against Muslim sensibilities. And he went further than that, stating, obtusely, that Muslims have “never taken part in terrorist massacres.” Erdogan made these alarming statements as Boko Haram waded through the blood of the 2,000 people they slaughtered in the Nigerian town of Baga, in the name of Islam. So, violent, intolerant Islam is on the march.

Islamists have always been an aggressive faction. Starting with Muhammad and continuing on through the Byzantine-Arab Wars (634-750), the conquests of Persia and Mesopotamia (633–651), Transoxiana (662–751), Sindh (664–712), Hispania (711–718) and Septimania (719–720), the attempts to conquer the Caucasus (711–750), the conquest of Nubia (700–1606) and Anatolia (1060-1360), the incursions into southern Italy, including the conquest of Rome (831–902) and the Byzantine-Ottoman Wars (1299-1453), Muslims have sought to establish control of any and all lands they set foot on, whether by violence or attrition. However, one chapter of Islamic conquest – or bid for conquest – is seldom mentioned in the history books, and perhaps for good reason: World War II.

It is common knowledge – although today that cannot be assumed, given the Progressive Movement’s penchant for “nuancing history” – that during World War II Germany, Japan and Italy allied to form the Axis Powers in their war efforts. There were other affiliate and co-belligerent states (Romania, Hungary, Bulgaria, Thailand, Finland and Iraq), as well as “client states” (Albania, Burma, China, Croatia, India, Mengjiang, Manchukuo, Philippines, Slovakia and Vietnam), officially considered to be independent countries allied with Germany.

Furthermore, there were key geopolitical players who supported and collaborated with Adolf Hitler, the Nazis and the Axis Powers as a whole throughout the conflict. One such geopolitical player was the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, the Sunni Muslim cleric in charge of Jerusalem’s Islamic holy places, including the Al-Aqsa Mosque. The designation of “Grand Mufti” identifies the bearer as the:

“…highest official of religious law in a Sunni or Ibadi Muslim country. The Grand Mufti issues legal opinions and edicts, fatwas, on interpretations of Islamic jurisprudence…The collected opinions of the Grand Mufti serve as a valuable source of information on the practical application of Islamic law as opposed to its abstract formulation.”

During World War II the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem was Haj Amin al-Husseini, who:

“…collaborated with both Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy by making propagandistic radio broadcasts and by helping the Nazis recruit Bosnian Muslims for the Waffen-SS. On meeting Adolf Hitler he requested backing for Arab independence and support in opposing the establishment in Palestine of a Jewish national home. At war’s end, he came under French protection, and then sought refuge in Cairo to avoid prosecution.”

When al-Husseini first met with Hitler and Ribbentrop in 1941, he assured Hitler that:

“The Arabs were Germany’s natural friends because they had the same enemies…namely the English, the Jews, and the Communists.”

Al-Husseini’s efforts in recruiting Muslim fighters for the Nazi cause resulted in the 13th Waffen Mountain Division of the SS, the Handschar Brigade. The Handschar earned a reputation for being particularly brutal in exterminating partisans in north-eastern Bosnia. In fact, many local Muslims who stood witness to Handschar viciousness were driven to align with the Communist partisans.

The Grand Mufti was also integral in the organization of Arab students and North African immigrants to Germany into the Arabische Freiheitkorps, an Arab Legion in the German Army, that hunted down Allied parachutists in the Balkans and fought on the Russian front.

It would be right to conclude then that al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, home to one of Islam’s holiest shrines, was a willing collaborator with the Nazis and Adolf Hitler; someone who willingly facilitated the Nazi SS and their “Final Solution”; the genocide of the Jews. Yet, in the end, al-Husseini, perhaps the principle Muslim leader throughout that period, walked away from the conflict paying no price for his murderous deeds.

From Hitler’s Foreign Executioners; Europe’s Dirty Secret by Christopher Hale, pages 373-374:

“By the Winter of 1944, Berlin was no longer a safe haven for men like the Grand Mufti. He had never been a brave man and was often found cowering under tables as the great armadas of Allied bombers pounded the capital of the Reich. His allies in the foreign office, like Erwin Ettel, did what they could to protect their esteemed Muslim guest and tried to coax him to escape Germany to whatever safe haven he chose by U-Boat. The Mufti was simply too timid to contemplate such a journey and held on in Berlin to the very end. At the end of May 1945, the Grand Mufti and his entourage at last picked up and fled. He knew that once the British reached Berlin they would waste little time tracking him down. After many tribulations, they managed to reach Constance in the French zone of occupation. Recalling how well he had been treated after his flight from Palestine, when he escaped to French Beirut from British Palestine, the Grand Mufti surrendered to the French authorities. He was soon relaxing in an opulent villa near Paris…

“The Mufti had little time to enjoy French hospitality. His protectors discovered that an ‘Irgun’ assassination squad had arrived in France. On 28 May 1945, el-Husseini bolted to Italy, then secretly boarded a British ship, the SS Devonshire, bound for the Egyptian port of Alexandria.

“The return of the Grand Mufti electrified the Arab world. At a rally at Heliopolis in Cairo exultant crowds swamped his convoy – and King Farouk offered him appropriately sumptuous accommodations in his ‘Inshas Palace.’ The leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, Hassan al-Banna, breathlessly declared: ‘The hearts of the Arabs palpitated with joy at hearing that the Grand Mufti had succeeded in reaching at Arab country…The lion is free at last and will roam the Arabian jungle to clear it of wolves. The great leader is back.’”

Today, as we witness the barbarous immolation of a warrior who dared to confront a culture of death, the Islamists remain. In the aftermath of the assassination of those who engage in free speech, as Daesh executes conquest after conquest leaving myriad atrocities in their wake, the Islamists remain. And as leaders of Islamic countries (read: Turkey) advance excuses for the barbarity of Islamist executioners; ideological operatives who slaughter ruthlessly in the name of Islam, the Islamists remain. Little has changed in the violent Islamist world from the days of the Handschar. Indeed, in a time when the president of the United States refuses to consider his country at war with Islamist extremists and the massive movement they represent – and as he maintains a refusal to even speak the phrase “Islamic terrorism,” one can argue that violent Islamists are in a better position today than they were under Hitler.

At the end of World War II, the Allied Powers insisted on attaining unconditional surrender from each of the Axis Powers. Germany, Italy and Japan signed and agreed to unconditional surrender, their satellite nations in tow. Suspiciously absent from the list of Axis power aggressors agreeing to unconditional surrender is Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem; the Muslim facilitator of the 13th Waffen Mountain Division of the SS, the Handschar. Why was this allowed to happen? Who was responsible for allowing this to happen?

I can’t help but feel that had the Allied Powers exacted an unconditional surrender from the Grand Mufti of all forces under his influence; had the Grand Mufti been brought to his knees in capitulation, perhaps – just perhaps – we would not be facing the “emboldened swords” of Daesh on the streets of the Western World and in Islamofascist occupied territories throughout the Middle East. I cannot help but feel that somehow, for some reason, the job of winning World War II was left unfinished…and the rise of violent Islamist terrorism is the price we are paying.

The world – much like in the nascent days of World War II – must once again strive to put aside the geopolitics of the day to come together in a definitive effort to confront the inglorious barbarity of Islamofascism. The peoples of the world must attack Islamofascism militarily, economically, historically and ideologically. Just as we must physically vanquish jihadists who would behead the innocent and set ablaze those who fight against them, so too must we starve them of operating capital globally, even as we correct the fictionalized history of “the religion of peace,” and especially as we deny them the ability to replenish their ranks; especially as we win – unconditionally – the war of ideas for all generations to come.

Today, the smoldering ashes of Jordanian Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh, a warrior who came to the aid of those being slaughtered by Daesh, lay denigrated underneath a pile of rubble, an excruciatingly painful death his reward for humanity’s service. And the Islamists remained. I can’t help but feel that the free world has unfinished business…until no Islamist remains.

Obama-Care And The Ford Edsel

There is no doubt that Obama’s crowning achievement, Obama-Care, has turned out to be as much as a success as the Ford Edsel. Why the very word “Edsel” became a popular symbol for failure, just like Obama-Care will turn out to be. As everyone knows by now, Obama-Care was nothing more than a government takeover of the health-care system and a gigantic transfer of wealth scheme.

Even Senior Democrats who were vital in writing and promoting Obama-Care appear to be having a change of heart. Sen. Chuck Schumer, the upper chamber’s No. 3 Democrat recently said, “Unfortunately, Democrats blew the opportunity the American people gave them, we took their mandate and put all of our focus on the wrong problem — health care reform.” “Americans were crying out for the end to the recession, for better wages and more jobs, not changes in health care,” he said.

Federal actuaries predict that health spending increases will nearly double soon, averaging 6 percent a year through 2023, pushing total health spending to a staggering 19.3 percent of GDP, up from 16.6 percent pre-Obama-Care, so much for Obama-Care controlling costs. Truth is, four years after its passage, Obama-Care has managed to cover only one out of four previously uninsured people, spending $57 billion to do it, free health-care, I don’t think so.

Now we find out it will cost the taxpayers, $50,000 for every person who gets health insurance under the Obama-Care law, the Congressional Budget Office revealed. It will take $1.993 trillion, a number that looks like $1,993,000,000,000, to provide insurance subsidies to poor and middle-class, while only bringing in $643 billion in new taxes, penalties and fees related to the Obama-Care law. Obama pledged to members of Congress in 2009, as his signature insurance overhaul law was being debated, that ‘the plan I’m proposing will cost around $900 billion over 10 years.’ Either he lied or he is incompetent, my money is on he lied.

For years, Harvard’s experts on health economics and policy have advised presidents and Congress on how to provide health benefits to the nation at a reasonable cost. But those remedies will now be applied to the Harvard faculty, and the professors are in an uproar. Richard F. Thomas, a Virgil scholar, said the health-care changes are “deplorable. They are deeply regressive.” And these are the people who supported the health-care law, Oh well, be careful what you wish for.

The problem with Obama-Care, liberals argue, is that it didn’t go far enough; we should have an entirely government-run health-care system. Well just ask the people of Vermont, who opted to have their own government health-care system. Vermonters were stunned to discover just how much their new “free” health care was going to cost. Paying for Green Mountain Care would have required a 160% increase in state taxes by 2019, as much as $2.9 billion annually. The state’s top income tax rate would have been raised from 8.95% to an astounding 18%. For high earners that would mean a combined federal-state income tax burden of 56%. Even lower-income Vermonters would have seen a substantial tax hike.

Because even these enormous tax hikes wouldn’t have provided enough money, Green Mountain Care would have cut payments to doctors and hospitals by an estimated 16%. That would have forced many doctors out of the state and threatened the viability of local hospitals. It is no wonder that Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin, a Democrat, announced that the state was giving up and abandoning its plans for Green Mountain Care. It seems that Socialized medicine sounds great, until you are forced to live it.

A little over a year ago my doctor who I had for years went to a strictly cash business because of Obama-Care. When I went to a new doctor there was a sign over the receptionist’s desk that read; All deductibles must be paid before service is provided.

And the law will still leave ‘between 29 million and 31 million’ non-elderly Americans without medical insurance, says the CBO.  This can’t be the change America wanted.

“What Kind Of Society Are We Leaving Our Kids” Available here.

Obama-Care

This is one man’s opinion.

 

The Real JV Team Emerges!

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Talk about a “haunting comment.” This will go down as one of President Obama’s all time.

Can you imagine how thick the book of “Obama’s Greatest Faux Paus” will be? Or how many volumes it will be?  Do I need to list them all or do we have them memorized as some of us do the “Pledge of Allegiance”? (Notice I said some.)

Mr. Obama called ISIS a “JV Team” but now he says he didn’t quite say that. Just like he now says he didn’t quite say “you can keep your doctor” and he didn’t quite say “your health care premiums would be less than you cell phone bill.” It sure seems like we keep hearing him wrong and the internet records him wrong a lot too!

To continue, he called ISIS a JV Team because he felt they didn’t lack the brain power, resources, and commitment that it takes to go after the Pro Teams, like the U.S., Saudi Arabia, Syria and God only knows who else he was thinking of.

You see the reason you have a JV Team is because the players are younger, less experienced, and need more time to practice together. You don’t usually want them on the big boys team because they would drag them down.

That “JV Team” that Mr. Obama tagged, aka ISIS, is now in control of a very large part of the Middle East. They are responsible for the murder of tens of thousands of innocent people. They are part of the reason oil prices are falling as they steal oil, load it up in stolen tankers, and sell it on the open market. They are instilling fear in and around Europe and parts of the U.S. These junior league boys are acting like, and accomplishing, senior league goals.

Why? Because they are committed at all costs, even to the point of death. That’s what makes them senior league. They are willing to give it all for the end game, and when they are up against it, they give some more. Their leaders speak out and stand behind their misguided principles and get the resources they need, by any means, to ensure they win.

Enter the “White House JV Team” (WHJV), the “Coyotes” ( I use coyotes because zoologist say they are the most cowardly animal and only attack when the enemy is well outnumbered.) This administration has gained control of one of the most powerful and feared fighting forces on the planet since the Roman army and has effectively turned them in to the most unreliable fighting force on the planet. And it’s no fault of the capable men and women that serve in the military.

This president knows more about more things than everyone of our great thinkers and philosophers before him. Just ask him and he tell you so!

I say this because he puts together military, economic, and social issue committees and takes little to none of the suggested actions from these committees.

He makes every mistake a first year law or medical student makes. Most students feel they have the answers after their first year in school and are willing to tell you what’s wrong with you before you even ask.

He put together a military commission on how to deal with ISIS and the threats in the Middle East. After they returned with their findings, mind you the committee was made up of seasoned military experts, he decided they were wrong and took it in another direction.  Ignoring the experts. A serious JV move.

To the jobs committee, he appointed the head of G.E. to chair it. The guy who took the majority of U.S. jobs overseas. Makes sense? Not so much. And once again implements almost none of the committee suggestions.

He gathered some well-known economists together for another committee, but none from the opposing side of the economic aisle. And when the committee came back with their recommendations, he implemented some but not the majority.

Read the rest at TRS

Something Wicked This Way Comes

swtwc

As we approach the dreaded tax filing deadline of April 15th, many Americans are ill-prepared for the news they are going to receive from their tax preparers or tax preparation software. Between three and six million people are going to be affected by penalties, an “Individual Shared Responsibility Payment,” associated with the Affordable Care Act. And most of those affected have no idea how much financial pain they are going to feel.

When the Obama Administration was selling Obamacare to the American people – you remember, “It’s not a tax,” “If you like your healthcare plan you can keep it,” “We have to pass the bill to find out what’s in it,” etc. – they alluded to the existence of penalties for those Americans who did not purchase ACA compliant health insurance. The amount for the first year non-compliance penalty was routinely quoted as $95. For many the choice was clear: keep the non-compliant health insurance, pay the $95 penalty (read: non-compliance tax), and hope that a Republican-led Congress would affect relief for the taxpayer as soon as they took control in Washington, DC.

But that scenario doesn’t impact this tax cycle. And while three to five million people have received subsidies through the Obamacare marketplaces to offset the cost of ACA compliant health insurance (still many more will qualify for exemptions), the penalty – or Individual Shared Responsibility Payment – for most of the three to six million Americans who opted to pay the fine and go without is going to be substantially more than they think.

Contrary to the commonly referred to fine of $95 for non-compliance, that amount is the least amount that can be imposed on an individual. The calculation used for the overwhelming majority of the non-compliant will be the higher of either one-percent of your household income above your filing threshold or a flat dollar amount up to $285 ($95 per adult, $47.50 per child). The important words to consider here are “household income.”

In the scenario where one spouse is covered by employer-sponsored health insurance but the other spouse is not – where one spouse is non-compliant, the Individual Shared Responsibility Payment is still based on the total of the household income; the compliant spouse is still entered into the penalty equation through the use of the household income as a defining integer. The idea that the ACA compliant individual cannot be adversely affected at tax time is a fallacy.

For example, let’s examine what the penalty (read: tax) would be on a Virginia household consisting of a man and a woman who, combined, made $150,000 for the year 2014. The woman is covered through her employer by ACA compliant health insurance, but the man is an independent contractor and chose to attain what used to be known as catastrophic health insurance, thus acquiescing to what he thought was going to be a $95 penalty. Using the Individual Shared Responsibility Payment calculator from HealthInsurance.org, the assessed penalty would be $1,297. A full $1202 more than the $95 for which they had planned. By contrast, a non-compliant single person making $75,000 in 2014 would have been assessed a $648.50 penalty. This means that the penalty for the “crime” of being from a household earning $150,000 with a single non-compliant spouse is $648.50; the penalty for being married to a non-compliant spouse is $648.50. The irony here is that the non-compliant spouse was still covered in the event of a medical emergency, even if he wasn’t ACA “compliant.”

The reasoning used by the Progressives and Democrats when arguing for the passage of the Affordable Care Act was that relief would be given to the healthcare system by virtue of the fact that everyone would be covered by health insurance; that everyone would be paying into the system. But having “passed the bill” so we can now “see what’s in it,” the reality of the matter is this. Obamacare was never about healthcare. It was never really even about everyone being covered by health insurance. And it wasn’t ever about everyone paying into the system. It was about creating two new revenue streams: one for the health insurance companies who now have a captive client-base, and another for the spendthrift federal government through the extraction of what the US Supreme Court has now identified as a tax.

And a heck of a tax it is…especially for the non-compliant and their compliant spouses.

Whose Side Is Obama And Holder On Anyway

Have you ever wondered why Obama and Holder always seem to be on the side of the enemy? Why are they so afraid to even admit who the enemy is? It seems to me that they have no problem blaming Republicans for everything, but refuse to criticize these Islamic Muslim terrorists, I do not understand why that is so hard to say.

Obama seems to have no problem with releasing terrorists back into the fight; closing Gitmo is an obsession with him, even though it is harmful to America. Now he finds it necessary to negotiate with terrorists, giving back five terrorists for a deserter, a man who disgraced his uniform. I guess Obama doesn’t seem to understand that by negotiating with terrorists, it will only embolden them to kidnap more people.

Let’s face it, our enemies do not fear America and they think Obama is a joke. With over 70% of the American people feeling that terror is their main concern even over the economy, Obama refuses to throw everything we have at those that want to destroy us. From Day One, this administration has downplayed the terrorist threat from Islamic extremists. It declared the terrorist attack at Fort Hood, Texas, in 2009 as “workplace violence.” It pulled all US troops out of Iraq, allowing ISIS to move in and create a training ground for terrorists. Protracted negotiations with Iran have allowed that rogue nation to fortify and beef up its nuclear facilities.

Even Sen. Robert Menendez, former chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee and a Democrat, when talking about Obama’s Iran’s nuclear policy says President Obama’s statements on the issue “sounds like talking points coming out of Tehran.”  Obama even had to apologize for not sending a high-level official to the unity rally in Paris protesting the murders at Charlie Hebdo by Islamic terrorists.

Holder is just as bad as his buddy Obama, he wants to give terrorists the same rights as citizens, he boasted in 2010 that failed shoe bomber Richard Reid, who was not an American citizen, was “advised of his right to remain silent and to consult with an attorney within five minutes of being removed from the aircraft.” Holder had no concern over losing the opportunity to interrogate Reid about his backers, as well as other possible terrorist attacks.

It was Holder who decided that 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his co-conspirators should be tried in a civilian courtroom in New York City, just blocks from where the twin towers of the World Trade Center once stood. Counterterrorism experts say that would have been a propaganda coup for al Qaeda and a security nightmare for the city.

Former US Attorney General Michael Mukasey pointed out what Eric Holder doesn’t seem to understand: “It is a mockery of the rule of law to take people who are charged with violating all the rules of war and put them in a situation that’s better than the one they would have been in if they followed the rules of war. It looks like amateur night at the Justice Department and made the US “look weak.”

From his first day in office, Holder began reshaping the Justice Department’s attitude towards terrorism. He hired radical attorneys who believe that freeing dangerous terrorists was an “assumption of risk” that must be taken to “cleanse the nation of Guantanamo’s moral stain.” There is no doubt in my mind that Eric Holder and his buddy Obama have weakened national security.

Obama was brought up as a Muslim, this is fact, and you are not going to tell me that he does not sympathize with Muslims and it is directly having an effect on his decision making on how to deal with the enemy. Right now we have a president and Attorney General, who say they want to defeat the enemy, but they won’t admit who that enemy is. On a resent trip to India Obama gave a speech where he even put the blame of global warming on America. Which is nothing new, because he believes all that is wrong with the world is America’s fault.

Now Obama has the nerve to say that the Taliban is not a terrorist organization, whose side is Obama and Holder really on? It beats the hell out of me.

“What Kind Of Society Are We Leaving Our Kids’ Available here.

Obama-Holder-constitution1-610x400

This is one man’s opinion.

 

The Darwin Award goes to Ed Schultz!

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merican Sniper is breaking box office records. Those who have seen the movie have great things to say about it. The realities of war and what these guys go through comes through loud and clear, except for a few Hollywood elitists.

The same groups of people who have no problem making movies glorifying hit men, prostitutes, mafia, and “shoot ‘em up, bang-bang” movies seem to have a big problem with American Sniper. It just shows you how full of themselves they really are.

But the guy that really takes the cake in showing the hatred some people have for America is Ed Schultz. Ed believes that if you don’t think like he does as to what American patriotism is, then basically, you’re a moron because he is the all-knowing, all-seeing all… well, he’s god. At least in his own mind!

Where are these cowards (guys like Michael Moore, Seth Rogan, and our buddy, Ed Schultz) when it comes to investigating what is truly taking place in the Middle East? Why aren’t they talking about the stories where, because of us, kids can play in streets again and businesses can actually operate safely and women can go to school again? Where were they when thousands of Christian kids were being slaughtered? When the Boko Haram crew took (and continues to take) kids from schools and sell them as slaves? We hear nothing from these cowards.

However, it’s easy for them to criticize our military. They won’t hunt you down and kill you for criticizing them!

Ed’s recent rant about how bad American Sniper was began with the tired, old, worn out “Bush lied people died” ………

Read the rest at TRS

 

 

That Was No SOTU – It Was A Populist Wish-List

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It is regrettable that we no longer have a true “State of the Union” (SOTU) speech. Rather than hearing a recapitulation of the condition of the nation and where it’s headed, we get what appears to be little more than another campaign speech replete with a veritable Christmas-list of populist proposals and recommendations. Predictably, there were errors, omissions, and outright prevarications, and very little mention of the problems that have been exacerbated over the past several years, in the president’s speech this week.

barack_obama_state_union-14First, however, a confession of sorts is in order. I didn’t watch the speech. When I was in college, I loved being lectured to by my ISU professors who were knowledgeable, competent, and capable. After all, that’s what I paid them for. Likewise, we pay our governmental leaders to be knowledgeable, competent, and capable and to keep their oath of office, to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. When all they do proves their incompetence, and they obviously lied when they took the oath, I’m not going to subject myself to their self-aggrandizing propaganda. After all, I’m not a masochist, and I find it increasingly difficult to resist the impulse to throw things at my TV in response to superfluous rhetoric, grandstanding, self-congratulations, and mendacity. So I read his speeches, instead.

color-obama-st-of-union-webMuch of Obama’s lecture Tuesday night was dedicated to his inexorable class warfare theme, pitting the middle class (who have been most adversely affected by the policies of the past six years) against the wealthy (who have done better than anyone during this administration). In advance of the delivery, he media had hyped this iteration of the SOTU as his “Robin Hood” speech. The metaphor hardly seems appropriate. Since Robin Hood stole from the Sheriff of Nottingham (not the rich from whom the sheriff had extorted the funds). As the head of the government, the President is essentially the Sheriff of Nottingham, who’s doing the extorting.

The President said, “Tonight, after a breakthrough year for America, our economy is growing and creating jobs at the fastest pace since 1999.” It would be wonderful for the nation if his policies had been conducive to our economic recovery and accelerated job growth. However, as we’ve documented before, these are occurring in spite of his policies, not because of them. It’s amazing what capitalistic economies can do when new obstacles are no longer being hurled in the way to thwart and stymy them!

stateoftheunion“We are as free from the grip of foreign oil as we’ve been in almost 30 years. … Today, America is number one in oil and gas. … And thanks to lower gas prices and higher fuel standards, the typical family this year should save about $750 at the pump,” Obama declared. Again, this is with no help from his administration. The massive growth in domestic oil production has been primarily on state and private lands, while his administration has done everything possible to curtail it on federal ground and waterways. And it’s been primarily with technology opposed by his party and his administration. And there’s the power of capitalism again – simple supply and demand benefiting the consumer with increased competition.

Enigmatically, the President queried, “Will we allow ourselves to be sorted into factions and turned against one another? Or will we recapture the sense of common purpose that has always propelled America forward? … A better politics is one where we debate without demonizing each other.” It’s pretty difficult to take this counsel from one who has spent the past six years polarizing and dividing, based on income, party affiliation, ideology, and color.

sotu“In two weeks, I will send this Congress a budget filled with ideas that are practical, not partisan,” he said. This is encouraging. If he comes through on the promise, it will be the first time he’s offered anything to congress in six years that isn’t partisan. We won’t hold our breath.

“In the past year alone about 10 million uninsured Americans finally gained the security of health coverage.” This reminded me of an email I received from a friend last year that summarized the 2700 page ObamaCare legislation in four simple sentences. A. In order to insure the uninsured, we first have to un-insure the insured. B. Next, we require the newly un-insured to be re-insured. C. To re-insure the newly un-insured, they are required to pay extra charges to be re-insured. And D. The extra charges are required so that the original insured, who became un-insured and then became re-insured, can pay enough extra so that the original un-insured can be insured, free of charge to them. That explains a great deal of the President’s “10 million” figure.

“I am sending this Congress a bold new plan to lower the cost of community college — to zero.” I’m always amazed at the liberal mind that struggles with economic realities. The cost doesn’t go away, it’s just redistributed, or paid by someone else. And to the liberal politician, it’s always the taxpayer! Never mind that the cost is a scant $60 billion. What is that to a politician who can make a grandiose promise – and make someone else pay for it?

obama-hot-air-453x604It really would have been nice to hear an actual analysis of the State of the Union. But alas, we just got another populist campaign speech. And even as such, it wasn’t much different than the hand-dryer in the lavatory that had a sticker attached which declared, “Press button for a speech from the president.”

 

Associated Press award winning columnist Richard Larsen is President of Larsen Financial, a brokerage and financial planning firm in Pocatello, Idaho and is a graduate of Idaho State University with degrees in Political Science and History and coursework completed toward a Master’s in Public Administration. He can be reached at [email protected].

Obama: Still A Legend In His Own Mind

Another State of The Union address has gone by, if you replayed Obama’s first one, then you have seen all the rest. Oh, the words are different, but his message is the same in all of them; tax and spend, tax and spend, that has been his agenda from day one. According to Obama, the world loves us, al-qaeda is on the run and all is right with the world.

We live in a country where the top 10% pay 70% of taxes, but that’s not good enough, Obama will not be happy until the top 10% pays 100% of taxes, and he talks about being fair, give me a break. More taxes and more government regulation is what Obama is all about, he truly believes that government is the answer to all things.

Obama said in his speech, “The shadow of crisis has passed, and the State of the Union is strong.” I guess he overlooked the poll that said over 60% of Americans believe we are still in a recession, along with the 60% who think America is heading in the wrong direction. The labor force participation rate is now 62.7 percent, the lowest level since 1978. Wages are not really growing much either, median family income dropped nearly 4 percent under Obama’s rule. Yes the unemployment rate has dropped to 5.6%, mainly because so many people have dropped out and gave up looking for work. The economy is certainly better, but the shadow of the crisis is likely to be with the U.S. for at least a couple more years.

“The verdict is clear middle-class economics works. Expanding opportunity works. And these policies will continue to work, as long as politics don’t get in the way,” says Obama. Policies continue to work? He said before this past midterm election, that his policies were on the ballot and his party got their ass handed to them because Americans did not think much of his policies. As far as politics is concerned, that is what Obama lives by; he doesn’t make a move unless politics is involved.

More free stuff is what Obama is calling for, after all Democrats have been using that same strategy for the past 200 years, promise free stuff to get votes. On the one hand he wants an initiative providing free community college for two years for students who keep up their grades, yet as part of his tax plan, he is calling for ending a tax break for college savings plans known as 529 plans. Under the change, earnings on contributions could not be withdrawn tax-free, as they can be now. I don’t get it, if someone can pay for their own college they get penalized, but if you didn’t save for college, you get rewarded with free college; there is something wrong with that picture.

Again he is calling for infrastructure spending, saying our roads and bridges are collapsing. What happened to that Trillion dollar stimulus package that was supposed to go for our infrastructure? You remember, all those “shovel ready jobs that were not quite shovel ready as we thought.” That money went to failed “green” companies such as Solyndra. You can bet that Obama’s friends are already standing in line with their hands out.

   “We can’t slow down businesses or put our economy at risk with government shutdowns or fiscal showdowns.” Hey, Obama, what about all your government regulation, how much has that slowed our economy, you are the reason this country has taken so long to rebound. He consistently says he is for the middle class, yet his policies have only made the rich richer and the poor poorer.

There is nothing new in what Obama has to say, he says free stuff, but most of us know there is nothing free in life; someone is going to have to pay for it, and if there are people out there who think the other guy is going to pay for it and not you, you are living in a fantasy world, just like Obama, because his hand will be in your pocket too.

“What Kind Of Society Are We Leaving Our Kids” Available here.

This is one man’s opinion.

 

 

 

Speaker Vote Brings Out Worst in Some Conservatives

Compromise

CompromiseThe recent reelection of John Boehner as Speaker of the House brought to light a disturbing trait among some who self-identify as “conservatives.” Boehner has been perceived as a thorn in the side of conservative interests since his first election four years ago, as he has continually acquiesced, or as some say it, “caved” to the left in his chamber, and to the president. The sentiment is captured in a landmark political cartoon showing an elephant reaching across a dangerous precipice toward an indifferent president, titled merely, “The Compromise.”

The sentiment is understandable, and shared by nearly all of us on the right of the political spectrum. But what was disturbing was the reaction of some toward their own congressmen who supported Boehner.

John-Boehner-debt-showdownRaul Labrador (R-ID) won reelection from Idaho’s 1st Congressional District in November and is as steeped in his conservative ideals, and the classical liberal precepts the country was founded upon, as any conservative in Congress. There can be no question that his loyalties lie with the Constitution, the enumerated powers of the federal government, and the rights ostensibly assured thereby.

But after it became known publicly that Labrador had voted for the Speaker, an outpouring of obstreperous denunciations ensued. Comments on Labrador’s Facebook wall accused him of being a traitor, a turncoat, of betraying his conservative values, and betraying all conservatives who voted for him. Many declared they would never support him again, while others called for his recall.

Anyone with a modicum of political savvy, knows, or at least should know, that our chosen candidates, and elected officials, are not always going to vote the way we want them to, or the way we would if we were there. But the very notion of removing, or refusing to vote again for, the congressman because of one vote, even though he may a Freedomworks conservative rating of 90, on a 0-100 scale, is nothing short of idiocy.

This is a dangerous mentality that seems to be common at extremes of any ideology. “Unless you agree completely with me, or refuse to vote precisely the way I would have you vote, I’m not going to support you.” The only way to assure that your representative votes precisely as you want them to is to hold that position yourself. No one sees issues and solutions precisely the same way, except perhaps pure ideologues.

Working together to Build Bridges

Working together to Build Bridges

The derision heaped upon Labrador for his Speaker vote is a perfect example of how illogically and ideologically rigid some can be. Labrador’s conservatism is indisputable, and yet because of one vote, he’s called every pejorative epithet in the book, and many who share his ideological orientation throw him under the bus. This is where the ignorance of governance is so blatantly manifest. A viable educational tool might be to consider what other forms of extremism employ the same tactic that ostracizes and divides based on ideological “purity.”

A critical component to our efforts in working together in this democratic experiment is the didactic process of refining tactics based on efficacy. That includes identifying the destructive tactics that preclude the very notion of compromise, (which is essential in a constitutional republic), and contribute to the increased polarization of the body politic. This is clearly one of the most detrimental tactics; when we are so rigid in our ideological convictions that we destroy the relationship shared with others who think mostly as we do. It’s destructive to the political process, and its nascence and impetus, is based in ideological rigidity.

saul-alinsky-obama-luciferIt’s also a tactic of some on the left, as superbly promulgated by Saul Alinsky. “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” Conservatives should realize that the consequences of implementing the tactic on themselves vitiates the advantages of a conservative voting block by dividing and parsing tranches based on perceived fealty to our founding principles. The result basically culls the “nonbelievers” from the “believers,” by lashing out, maligning, and condemning those who are perceived to not agree entirely, essentially ostracizing those who should be our allies.

It should be disturbing to conservatives when they learn that they employ the same tactic as other extremists, but many seem to revel in it, as if it’s a badge of honor of how “conservative” they are. That’s not a measure of political ideological integrity – it’s a measure of political ignorance of how the system works and how we have to work together in this republic of ours.

We should express our disapprobation to our elected officials when we disagree. But it’s totally illogical, and self-destructive, when we marginalize and alienate those with whom we share values, but may differ occasionally on specific votes. There aren’t many affirming or positive adjectives that can be used to describe someone who can only be supportive of, or civil to, someone with whom they agree 100% of the time.

If conservatives continue these tactics, they will succeed only in splintering and dividing themselves, granting the left victory after victory at the polls. It’s so often quoted that I hesitate to say it again, but apparently some need the continual reminder. As Ronald Reagan once said, “He who agrees with me 80% of the time is not my enemy.” Or his variation on that theme, “My eighty-percent friend is not my twenty-percent enemy.”

A Positive Constitutional Right: Your Child is Village Property

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“We need to break through this private idea that kids belong to their parents, or kids belong to their families and recognize that kids belong to their whole communities.” – MSNBC Host Melissa Harris-Perry states

Children today are considered village property. While some believe parental rights depend on elected official’s vote, this conjures up images of communist or fascist youth. As Hilary Clinton declared, “It Takes A Village To Raise A Child.”

Alexander Hamilton described the people’s rights best be in “a treatise of ethics than in a constitution of government.” Government “is merely intended to regulate the general political interests of the nation, than to a constitution which has the regulation of every species of personal and private concerns.” Big government advocates advocate for positive rights, parental rights granted by government. In other words, children become property of the state.

The United Nations Declaration of Human Rights declares that everyone has a right to education. Article 26 states “Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.” In 1989, the UN Convention on the Rights of a Child declares states are responsibility to eliminate “ignorance and illiteracy throughout the world.” It goes on that “education given in such institutions shall conform to such minimum standards as may be laid down by the State.” The Parental Rights Amendment establishes such parental responsibility.

In 1992, Lawyers capitalize on children’s rights with Gregory K as the first child in American history to sue his parents for a divorce. Judge Kirk declared that the boy has the same constitutional right to protect his fundamental interests as an adult. This established “a precedent for other cases.”

In 1992, Gregory K sued his parents for abuse. In 2014, young adults are suing for college tuition. 21-year old, Caitlyn Ricci sued her parents for college tuition despite neither parent seeing her for the last two years. 18-year old, Rachel Canning sued her parents for financial support and college tuition. Her parents said she left home because she didn’t want to obey their rules.

United States has yet ratified the United Nations treaty but NGOs are still pushing for the Parental Rights Amendment. The Parental Rights Amendment declares “The liberties of parents to direct the upbringing, education, and care of their children is a fundamental right.” This amendment grants positive rights to the parent. It provides the liberties of parents “the right to choose public, private, religious, or home schools, and the right to make reasonable choices within public schools for one’s child.”

NGOs seek to establish a “Big Brother” using the history of children’s rights to collectivize children. The true question is whether our children belong to the family or are collective property organized under “the State.”

Obama to go on Offense – with nothing to lose

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obama_accessory_to_murderPresident Obama made clear to Democrats, in a closed-door meeting, that he intends to do everything possible to obstruct the newly-elected Republican congress.

Politico reports, Obama is going shock-and-awe to stop the popularly-elected Congress:

According to several sources at the Thursday summit in Baltimore, Obama vowed to defend his agenda against Republicans in Congress, promised to stand firm against GOP efforts to dismantle his agenda and called on his Democratic colleagues to help sustain his expected vetoes. The president also was explicit over his administration’s opposition to an Iran sanctions bill, promising to veto legislation with his administration in the midst of multilateral nuclear negotiations with the Middle Eastern regime.

This President has nothing to lose. As a second-term, lame-duck and largely unpopular leader has no political capital, prestige or honor left to give up. He cannot be re-elected, no Democrat wants them on their campaign stops and every leader in Congress that supported his agenda is… no longer a leader (R.I.P Harry and Nancy.)

The difficulty the President faces is that many other re-electable Democrats don’t actually agree with him. It would seem that about 40% of Democrats support the Keystone XL Pipeline and moderate Dems are ready to bump heads with the lame-duck President:

Centrist Democrats have criticized President Obama for the time it has taken to review the project, and are trying to pass legislation to approve Keystone XL.

These Democrats are in-danger of losing their seats as their constituents face real day-to-day costs like gas and groceries. Obama’s policies have done nothing to help them and the President’s new obstructionist stance just infuriates those already tired of the inability of Washington to do much of anything.

The President of change and working together is now the President of “My way or the highway.” Then again.. hasn’t he always?

Facebook CEO Pushes Freedom of Expression While Censoring Content

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facebook-nasdaq-board-1-200Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, has made statements in support of free expression while dealing with the hypocrisy of censoring content on his own social media site.

Zuckerberg’s status update on 9 January promising “a service where you can speak freely without fear of violence” sparked a debate about Facebook’s own censorship, from breastfeeding photos to a post by Pakistani actor Hamza Ali Abbass that questioned the value of “insulting” speech.

 

Mark’s comments at a public comments event in January centered on how freedom of expression should be protected regardless of whom it might offend. Facebook’s CEO believes that a person should be able to express themselves and perhaps make a living saying and doing things that others may find offensive – like Hedbo’s cartoons.

He was asked why he had spoken out about the Charlie Hebdo attack, but not about other violent events around the world, including in Iraq and Palestine.
“It wasn’t just a terrorist attack about just trying to do some damage and make people afraid and hurt people. This was specifically about people’s freedom of expression and ability to say what they want,” said Zuckerberg.

Then again, this is the social media company that cowered from China instead of fighting for the Chinese people’s right to free expression.

Zuckerberg also prohibits businesses involved with firearms from purchasing ads on his network while allowing those that promote sex chat sites to advertise regularly. Psst, Mark, firearms ownership is protected by the same constitution that protects the speech you so readily pretend to defend.

It would appear that Mark Zuckerberg’s idea of standing for free expression ends when someone puts the tamest of controversies in front of him.

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