Wednesday, January 27, 2016

THE PATRIOT POST 01/27/2016

THE FOUNDATION

"An unlimited power to tax involves, necessarily, a power to destroy; because there is a limit beyond which no institution and no property can bear taxation." —John Marshall, 1819

TOP RIGHT HOOKS

The More Voters See of Clinton, the More They Don't Like

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According to the most recent Fox News poll, Hillary Clinton is bleeding followers nationally. A month ago, she was riding a wave of 56% support among Democrats. Sanders had a 34% following and 4% of the respondents didn't know who they would support. In the poll conducted Jan. 18-21, Clinton's support dropped to 49%, Sanders is up to 37% and 10% of Democrats don't know who they should support in the rapidly approaching primaries.
One of the factors driving uncertainty in the Democrat Party is that her campaign might suffer a sudden death if Clinton is prosecuted by the FBI for mishandling classified information — more bad news dropping this week. The other is that Clinton's policies lack the pop that Sanders' have. For instance, Sanders said he wants to hike taxes so that the government confiscates another $20 trillion over 10 years. Clinton's tax plan proposes raising taxes by $498 billion over that same period — comparatively weak sauce for "progressives" wanting to stick it to the "rich."
According to an analysis by the Tax Foundation, Clinton's tax proposal would shrink U.S. GDP by 1%. Furthermore, as Reince Priebus, chair of the Republican National Committee, said, "Hillary Clinton's tax hike plan is an absolute disaster. Not only do Clinton's tax increases fail to pay for her $1.2 trillion spending spree, they will slow economic growth, drive down wages, and kill the equivalent of hundreds of thousands of full-time jobs." And to think that the economic damage caused by Clinton's tax hikes will be nothing to what Sanders might unleash on the economy.
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CBO Lowers ObamaCare Enrollment Prediction

Both the Obama administration and the "nonpartisan" Congressional Budget Office predicts a lackluster number of Americans signing up for health care through the federal exchange. In October, the administration estimated there would be 10 million signups in 2016, a modest increase from 2015. The CBO this week, however, revised down its prediction for the number of people getting their health care through Barack Obama's system. Last year, the CBO estimated 20 million Americans would use ObamaCare in 2016, but now they say it'll be just 13 million. Remember: The actual numbers of signups have come in well below past projections. Still, the Obama administration has just enough wiggle room to call the downgraded numbers a "success."
But as the editorial board for The Wall Steet Journal pointed out, "The truth is that liberals can either adapt to the same economic reality that businesses confront or they can keep their regulations in the name of fairness and social justice. If they continue to do the latter, they may find the system is so fair that no one can afford to participate." The economic winners in the years after ObamaCare was implemented were the large insurance companies. But as WSJ reports, the profit margin for UnitedHealth Group has shrunk to 3.7% from 4.3%. While all other sectors of its business have made money, the health care exchange has cost the company money, thanks to the rules the Obama administration established. As a result, UnitedHealth Group is threatening to leave the ObamaCare exchange, which would be a clear sign the whole system is not working.
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Wages Lead to Trouble in Walmart-Land

Walmart has announced that it's closing 154 stores, most of them the company's Express stores operating in small communities. After moving into rural communities, and often choking out independent small businesses, Walmart is tweaking its business model. The reason? The rising cost of wages has overtaken the profit margins of those stores. On one hand, Walmart raised wages to keep workers, but it also announced the move in response to political pressure to raise the minimum wage. $15 an hour, anyone? The company also backed out of establishing stores in the District of Columbia, making the city's liberal politicians "blood mad." After all, the stores would have created jobs in some of the city's poorest neighborhoods, while providing options for residents to buy groceries and goods. This led the editors at Investor's Business Daily to write, "Sorry, but forcing employers of unskilled, largely untrained labor to pay higher prices for their labor is a recipe for automation, layoffs and no job creation. It punishes the poor, unskilled and uneducated most of all. The leftist demagogues who push this nonsense should be ashamed." And liberal politicians wonder where the jobs have gone.
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FEATURED RIGHT ANALYSIS

Strange Bedfellows Lead to the Iowa Caucus

By Louis DeBroux
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With the Iowa caucuses less than a week away, the Republican race is the strangest nomination process in memory. After the flame-out of both establishment favorites and conservatives with experience, the race is quickly coming down to Donald Trump and Ted Cruz, though Marco Rubio may still have an outside shot. How did we get here?
Cruz is loathed by the GOP establishment as a "whack job" because of his unbending allegiance to conservative principles, and for calling out the GOP leadership and establishment for their failures to govern according to the promises on which they campaigned.
Trump is the circus sideshow, a lifelong liberal Democrat with New York values, a reality TV star and casino mogul supposedly without a chance of winning the more conservative Southern states — an absolute must for any Republican. He's the narcissist who can't stand to be out of the limelight, and he'll insult anybody and everybody to get attention. He's proclaimed he won't participate in Thursday night's debate moderated by Fox News, all because he's seemingly afraid of Megyn Kelly, whom he's already grossly insulted. Instead, he claims, he'll host an event to raise money for veterans. We'll believe it when we don't seem him on stage, but has there ever been a politician with thinner skin?
But a funny thing happened along the way. Cruz quietly built up an impressive campaign war chest that made him a force to be reckoned with, and his principled conservative record and message, plus his refusal to attack Trump, led to a steady rise in the polls. Trump has defied all political wisdom and held a perpetual lead in the polls based almost entirely on his unapologetically un-PC rhetoric and his brash (if inconsistent) populism on illegal immigration, combating Islamic terrorism, and the economy. Angry voters consider him the best vehicle to express their outrage.
Cruz took the lead in Iowa about a month ago, and he immediately became the target of the GOP establishment — to whom he has been a huge thorn in the side. The establishment clearly prefers a "dealmaker" like Trump. That began to take its toll, and was compounded when the Trump/Cruz d├ętente ended shortly before the last debate. Trump concern trolled about Cruz's eligibility and began calling him a "nasty" person who can't get along with anyone in DC. We thought that was a virtue to Trump supporters, but apparently not. Because out comes Trump, boasting that he can get along not only with the GOP establishment, but with Democrats like Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer.
It's a testament to just how much blinding hatred there is among the GOP base for the party's leadership that Trump — who is seen by the vast majority of his supporters as a stick in the eye to the GOP establishment — is the frontrunner. He is the establishment's creation. Trump is the byproduct of a base that had to watch government grow under George W. Bush, grow even more under Obama, and see two historic wave elections in the last two mid-terms wasted when Republican majorities in the House and Senate caved again and again to the demands of Obama and the Democrats. Trump is seen by his supporters as a no-holds-barred, take-no-prisoners candidate who will do whatever it takes to win.
Nothing The Donald says or does seems to bother his supporters — he brags, "I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn't lose any voters" — even when those things would render any other candidate unsupportable to the conservative base. Conservatives were outraged at John Boehner for not doing enough to repeal ObamaCare, and they drove him out of office. Yet just a few months ago Trump came out in support of single-payer health care, just like avowed socialist and Democrat candidate Bernie Sanders.
Trump was also for defunding Planned Parenthood one week before he was against defunding Planned Parenthood.
The GOP establishment, which not too long ago warned that Trump would be the death of the Republican Party, is now coming out of the woodwork to extol Trump's deal-making virtues, saying he is someone they can work with to get things done, unlike Cruz.
In recent days, Trump has received endorsements or de facto endorsements from such GOP moderates and former losers like Bob Dole, or from Republicans like Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, who are fearful of losing their special privileges under a President Cruz (Cruz has come out against subsidies for ethanol, which brings in enormous federal money into Iowa, and Branstad's son runs an ethanol lobbying group). Even evangelical leaders like Jerry Falwell Jr. have endorsed Trump.
One would think that Cruz would epitomize for the conservative base the ideal candidate. He is constitutionalist and a strict constructionist who has argued before the Supreme Court nine times as Texas's solicitor general. He has been unwavering in his conservative, constitutional principles, even when that means enduring the slings and arrows of not only the Leftmedia and the Democrats (we repeat ourselves), but the GOP establishment and its go-along-to-get-along ways. He is a family man who clearly loves America as the Founders envisioned it. Yet he is trailing Trump in the polls.
Iowa is a strange animal, and the caucuses take much more time, effort and commitment by each candidate's supporters than just voting in a primary. It is the die-hards who turn out. Will Trump's supporters turn out for him and seriously hamper Cruz's run at the presidency? Will the embrace of Trump by the GOP establishment as a willing partner to their schemes erode support among Trump's base? Has Cruz slipped in the polls as much as the media claim? Is Trump inevitable at this point?
We'll know in less than a week.
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MORE ORIGINAL PERSPECTIVE

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

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TOP HEADLINES

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OPINION IN BRIEF

Hans von Spakovsky and Andrew R. Kloster: "The undercover videos that CMP released certainly seem to show that Planned Parenthood employees were trying to receive much greater compensation for the organs of aborted babies than a simple reimbursement of costs. They talk about getting 'top dollar' and discuss different prices for various organs. Handling and transportation costs are not going to change whether you are harvesting — what a euphemism for what is really going on — a liver or a heart. You even have one Planned Parenthood executive caught saying she needed to get the right price for aborted organs because she wants 'a Lamborghini,' which, if it was a joke, was an atrocious one. The point, however, is that if the grand jury believes that [David] Daleiden should be charged with offering to buy a human organ, based on the videos, it almost inconceivable that the same grand jury would not also conclude that Planned Parenthood should be charged with violating the same statute by offering to sell him human organs. The entire context of the video involves a complicated haggling process, but only one of the two parties appears to actually intend to go through with the illegal sale — and that party is Planned Parenthood. ... Law professor Ron Rotunda ... told us that Texas Gov. Greg Abbott should stop this abusive prosecution by pardoning the two defendants and then ask that a new prosecutor investigate Planned Parenthood's apparent trafficking in body parts."
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SHORT CUTS

Insight: "We have on the one hand a desperate need; hunger, sickness, and the dread of war. We have, on the other, the conception of something that might meet it: omnicompetent global technocracy. Are not these the ideal opportunity for enslavement? This is how it has entered before; a desperate need (real or apparent) in the one party, a power (real or apparent) to relieve it, in the other." —C.S. Lewis (1898-1963)
Upright: "We are in a moment of constitutional crisis. America already has one post-constitutional party; we don't need another. We have a president who does not believe in executive restraint; we do not need another. I am not endorsing any candidate; I am urging conservatives to hold every candidate accountable to keeping their word so that we uphold the Constitution's system of checks and balances. I'm pro-Constitution and if that makes me anti-Trump, that's Mr. Trump's problem." —Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE)
For the record: "No Donald on the debate on Thursday? First let me say: I will believe it when I see it. However this is not surprising if you follow the pattern of Donald Trump. We already have a president who will not talk to Fox News. Now Donald Trump? Only liberal progressives block Fox." —Glenn Beck
Flashback: "Michele Bachmann just dropped out of prez race — when she didn't do the Newsmax debate it showed great disloyalty and people rejected her." —Tweet from Donald Trump on Jan. 4, 2012
Fair share: "We will raise taxes, yes we will." —Bernie Sanders on how he'll fund Medicare For All
Braying Jackass: "[T]he Republican Party and the right-wing news entertainment media complex have spent more than eight years trying to find new ways to call Barack Obama — and by extension black Americans en masse — a 'nig—' without actually using the slur." —Salon's Chauncey DeVega
Alpha Jackass: "It's unfortunate that the entire country is a racist country. ... We are living in a country that discriminates and has certain racial tendencies — racist tendencies. ... Generally speaking, we're a bunch of racists." —Hollywood director Danny DeVito
Late-night humor: "A lot of people got stranded over the weekend and flights were canceled. There was more than two feet of snow in Washington, DC, and New York. All nonessential federal workers in Washington, DC, were told to stay home. ... How do you know if you're nonessential? Do they call you? 'Steve, I have some good news and some bad news. Good news is you have the day off today. Bad news, you're worthless.'" —Jimmy Kimmel
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Managing Editor Nate Jackson
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