Have nothing to do with the [evil] things that people do, things that belong to the darkness. Instead, bring them out to the light... [For] when all things are brought out into the light, then their true nature is clearly revealed...

-Ephesians 5:11-13

Category Archives: Politics

Indiana Senate Democrats Missed a Great Opportunity to Appear Human

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, May 30, 2018: 

Following the shooting at Noblesville Middle School on Friday, Indiana Democrats issued a statement of condolences, according to CBS News, and then pushed for more gun controls.

So focused were they on their anti-gun agenda that they missed a great opportunity to appear human: expressing concern for the students, for the coach who was shot for his trouble in stopping the shooter, for the student who was nearly killed by the shooter, for the support the community 20 miles outside Indianapolis continues to give to the wounded coach and his student.

But, no. Instead they focused their attention on those who had nothing to do with the shooting: law-abiding Indiana gun owners.

Here is what happened at about 9am last Friday morning in Noblesville:

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U.S. Citizen Joshua Holt Released by Venezuela, Welcomed Back by Trump

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, May 28, 2018:  

When Utahn Joshua Holt met with President Donald Trump at the White House late Saturday night, he said he was “overwhelmed with gratitude” over his release on Friday from two years in a filthy Venezuelan prison. Accompanying Holt to the White House were his parents Jason and Laurie Holt, his Venezuelan wife Thamara, and her daughter Marian.

Two years ago Holt, who is a member of the LDS church, flew to Venezuela to marry his Mormon sweetheart, whom he met over the Internet while trying to improve his Spanish. Within hours of his wedding, the thuggish regime of Marxist dictator Nicolas Maduro arrested both of them on phony illegal weapons charges and put them into a detention center known as El Helicoide. There they stayed without being allowed even a preliminary hearing. And there they were likely to stay without outside help.

That help came from an unlikely and largely unknown source:

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Senator Elizabeth Warren Pledges to Take “No NRA Money,” Despite Never Having Received Any

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, May 25, 2018:  

In her reelection campaign video posted last week at NowThisNews, far-left anti-gun Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren (aka “Pocahontas,” with a Freedom Index Rating of just 13 out of 100) promised not to take any money from the National Rifle Association (NRA), declaring:

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The Sausage-Making Behind the Dodd-Frank Bill Trump Just Signed

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Friday, May 25, 2018: 

It is said that politics is the art of compromise. An uglier but perhaps more accurate assessment is that politics is the art of sausage making: no one wants to know how sausages are made, nor laws.

To their credit, two researchers for the Wall Street Journal, Ryan Tracy and Andrew Ackerman, have exposed the sausage-making behind passage of the Dodd-Frank deregulation bill by the Senate earlier this month. Through the efforts of Senator Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), the bill passed the Senate 67-31 and headed for the House. It was passed by the House on Tuesday, 258-159, but that gets ahead of the story.

Here is what they learned, expressed in their own words, and repeated here through liberal extractions from their Journal article for our purposes:

The story of how the legislation came together, based on interviews with current and former officials, demonstrates how policy makers scaled back their priorities to maintain support for a compromise.

Comment here: notice please that it’s political considerations, not the Constitution and its limitations, that set the table for the compromise.

To continue:

A senior White House official said the administration wanted to help smaller lenders and “recognized that this was about as much as we could get.” The bill is one part of the administration’s agenda to roll back Dodd-Frank rules, the official said.

 

The bill reflects the outline agreed to by Messrs. Crapo and Cohn. It would raise to $250 billion from $50 billion the threshold at which big banks automatically face strict stress tests and other rules. It would also make community banks eligible for relief from mortgage-underwriting standards.

Comment here: notice that the big banks enjoy a sizeable “carve-out” from the onerous Dodd-Frank rules, but that is given up in exchange for the lessening of rules on local “community” banks, i.e., small banks and local credit unions in their mortgage lending practices. Also note that Mike Crapo is a relatively conservative senator (his Freedom Index rating is 69 out of 100) who is head of the Senate Banking Committee, while Gary Cohn who served briefly as Trump’s chief economic advisor was formerly the president and CEO of Goldman Sachs.

Back to the Journal:

Mr. Crapo, who declined to comment, became Senate Banking Committee chairman in 2017. A conservative known for his “no drama” demeanor, he told Mr. Cohn that he believed he could enact significant Dodd-Frank changes.

 

The senator discussed with the former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. executive the outlines of legislation rolling back rules on smaller to medium-sized banks. Both agreed such legislation would be worth doing, even though the strategy would leave behind other GOP priorities.

 

They didn’t, for instance, try to reorganize the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a move backed by Republicans but opposed by Democrats.

Just a word on the CFPB: it’s the brainchild of far-left liberal Senator Elizabeth Warren, who designed the agency to be completely independent of Congress, with its own funding provided by its landlord, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. See Sources below for two articles on that agency inside the Fed’s offices.

Back to the Journal:

Mr. Crapo, in the previous Congress, had reached broad agreement on such a package with four moderate Democrats: Sens. Joe Donnelly (D., Ind.), Heidi Heitkamp (D., N.D.), Jon Tester (D., Mont.), and Mark Warner (D., Va.). He wagered he could win their support again, and that they would bring additional members of the Democratic caucus to secure the requisite 60 of 100 Senate votes.

 

Democratic supporters in the Senate—17 in all—say the legislation is needed to help smaller, community banks unduly affected by post-crisis regulations. “Too big to fail had become too small to succeed,” Ms. Heitkamp said.

Comment here: Heidi Heitkamp is too clever by half. She is running for reelection as a Democrat in a state that went heavily for Trump in 2016. She is running scared and needs to placate her constituency, which is probably very tired of her according to the latest polls.

Said the writers: “Ten of them are also up for re-election in 2018, with seven representing states that Mr. Trump won in 2016.”

Crapo is a seasoned politician, and knows these Democrats are fearing for their political lives. Once again: the Constitution is of no concern here, just political survival.

Back to the Journal:

During the negotiations, Mr. Crapo rejected potentially controversial proposals such as consumer bureau changes. He narrowed others to win Democratic support: Mortgage-underwriting-standards relief would go only to banks with fewer than $10 billion in assets, for example.

 

Democrats, anxious to limit the bill’s scope, resisted some provisions related to capital markets. Lawmakers also ultimately didn’t include language giving new class-action rights to trial lawyers.

 

Meanwhile, Mr. Cohn spoke with wary Democrats, sometimes daily, reassuring them that the White House wouldn’t scuttle a limited deal.

By the end of October, Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), a member of Crapo’s committee, told Crapo he wouldn’t support the bill and so Crapo took him off his list.

There was a Halloween party, according to the journalists:

That evening, at Ms. Heitkamp’s Capitol Hill home, the North Dakota senator and Mr. Tester shared beers and vowed to press on. The two began the process of finding co-sponsors by dividing up names in the Democratic caucus on a napkin.

 

On Nov. 13 – two weeks later – Mr. Crapo said he had a bipartisan deal. It split moderate Democratic supporters and more-liberal opponents led by Mr. Brown and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), who thought the bill went too far to help an industry posting record profits.

Warren was so opposed to anything that might damage in the slightest her illegal, unconstitutional, and totally unaccountable creation inside the Fed that she named those favoring the small modifications to the Dodd-Frank bill in a move that was politically stupid:

Ms. Warren criticized other Democratic supporters by name in a fundraising email, a move some colleagues felt crossed a line.

The journalists left their readers in limbo, concluding only that, when all the sausage-making had been completed and the votes were tallied, the bill passed the Senate 67-31 and headed over to the House.

There, there was more sausage-making. As the House was considering the Economic Growth Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act – the official title of the weak Dodd-Frank deregulation bill – House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) pressed for more drastic changes. Long opposed to the original Dodd-Frank law enacted in response to the financial collapse that triggered the Great Recession of 2007-08, Hensarling was rounding up support for additional changes to the law.

Until he got a call from the president, who said, “Jeb, I want the bill now.” In exchange for backing off, Hensarling received assurances from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) that he would bring a bill containing more Dodd-Frank deregulations to the Senate floor before the November elections.

And so, on Tuesday, by a vote of 258-159, the Dodd-Frank deregulation bill passed the House in the same form as it passed the Senate earlier, and is headed for the President’s desk. White House officials said that Trump will sign it before the Memorial Day weekend, perhaps sooner.

And that, friends, is how things are done in Washington. Sausage-making is what happens when the Constitution is ignored and political considerations rule in its place.

Trump has another “bullet point” as the November elections draw closer, large banks have more leeway, smaller banks have slightly more freedom, and the odious Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is firmly cemented into place.


Sources:

Politico: House sends major bank bill to Trump, capping years of effort

CNBC: House votes to ease bank rules, and Trump says he will sign the bill

NJTVONLINE.org: House rolls back Dodd-Frank regulations

The Wall Street Journal: How Congress Rolled Back Banking Rules in a Rare Bipartisan Deal

Background on Dodd-Frank, aka Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act

The New American:  Taming the Tyranny of the Agency

The New American: Unaccountable CFPB Ruled Constitutional; Spends Millions on Office Makeovers

Mike Crapo’s Freedom Index rating: 69 out of 100

Background on Mike Crapo

Background on Gary Cohn

Trump to Sign Compromise Dodd-Frank Deregulation Bill This Week

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, May 24, 2018: 

As the House was considering the Economic Growth Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act — a weak Dodd-Frank deregulation bill passed earlier by the Senate — House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) pressed for more drastic changes. Long opposed to the original Dodd-Frank law enacted in response to the financial collapse that triggered the Great Recession of 2008-09, Hensarling was rounding up support for additional changes to the law. One of the most pernicious pieces of Dodd-Frank — the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau invented by far-left Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) — remained untouched by the compromise bill passed by the Senate and Hensarling wanted to do something about it.

That is, until he got a call from the president, who said

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More Taxpayers Fleeing Illinois Than Any Other State

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, May 23, 2018:

Thanks to the mass exodus of citizens from the Land of Lincoln, Illinois has dropped from the fifth most-populous state in the union to sixth. According to Chicago’s WGN TV, it’s due largely to the state taxing them out of their homes.

Over the last two years, more than 70,000 people have left Illinois for warmer and more tax-friendly climes such as Texas, Florida, and even South Dakota and Wyoming. In fact, Chicago is the only city in the United States that has consistently lost citizens over the last five years. The so-called “U-Haul index” — a measure of the difference in rates charged for outgoing rental trucks versus incoming trucks — rates Illinois as number one for outbound moving vans.

They are no doubt getting out while the getting is good.

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Booming Economy Dimming Democrats’ “Blue Wave” Hopes in November

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, May 23, 2018: 

America’s recovery from both the Great Recession and the oppression of the Obama years has shown up not only in the numbers but in attitudes, both economic and political. And with that improvement, talk of the “blue wave” taking over the House of Representatives by the Democrats in November has virtually disappeared.

The numbers are remarkable, as The New American and other real news outlets have repeatedly reported. Job growth, unemployment, and even poverty levels have all benefited from the release of pressure from the central government under the Trump administration. Job openings are the highest since 2000, unemployment is at 3.9 percent and falling, and real (inflation-adjusted) wages are improving. According to Sentier Research, “Median household income in April of this year was higher than for any other month since January 2000 [and] 12.9 percent above the post-recession low point [in] June 2011.”

A report from the Census Bureau on income and poverty levels already showed great improvement during the last two years of the Obama administration, as shown below, but Obama reigned over the slowest economic recovery since the Great Depression. Trump has simply supercharged the economy during his time in office.

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Fraudulent Election in Venezuela Guarantees More Suffering

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, May 21, 2018: 

To no one’s surprise, the Marxist dictator running Venezuela into the ground won a farcical reelection to a third six-year term on Sunday. Exulted Nicolás Maduro, the former cab driver who learned his politics in Communist Cuba, “You have confided in me and I’m going to respond to that infinite confidence, that loving confidence. All Venezuela has triumphed. Legitimate elections, accompanied by the only one who can decide the future: the people.”

He added: “We will be the most powerful and largest political force in Venezuela for a long time. It doesn’t faze me when they say I’m a dictator.”

Nearly every claim in those statements is a lie.

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Latest CBS Poll: Americans Happy With Economy

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, May 21, 2018:  

Nearly two out of three Americans polled by CBS rate the economy as either “very good” or “somewhat good,” while only nine percent rate the economy as “very bad.” The poll, CBS News Nation Tracker, which was released on Sunday, showed that respondents think the president is largely responsible for it: When asked, “How much do you think Donald Trump’s policies are responsible for the current state of the economy?” more than two out of three said “a great deal” or “somewhat” responsible.

The poll contained additional good news for Republicans heading into the November midterm elections: Seven out of 10 GOP voters told CBS that they prefer a candidate that the president supports.

These results are consistent with those from CNN earlier this month that showed that

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Dick’s Sporting Goods Doubles Down: Hires Three Anti-Gun Lobbyists

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, May 14, 2018: 

Lobbying records uncovered by The Federalist in early May show that Dick’s Sporting Goods hired three anti-gun lobbyists to push for gun-control legislation in Washington. The Federalist noted:

The three lobbyists tapped by Dick’s to push for gun control are … Joel Johnson, who worked for both President Bill Clinton and Senate Democrat leadership; Andrew King, who worked for Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.); and Christina Brown, a former staffer for Sen. Bob Casey (D-Pa.).

This latest development is more evidence of what the National Rifle Association (NRA) calls the “irrational” behavior of Dick’s Chairman and CEO Edward Stack, son of the chain’s founder, Dick Stack. First, Stack announced in February that his stores would no longer be selling handguns to anyone under age 21, that he was removing all AR-15 semi-automatic rifles from his stores’ shelves, and that those stores would no longer sell “high-capacity” magazines that carried more than 10 rounds.

Next, Stack announced that, rather than return that inventory to the gun manufacturers under their return policies — or donate them to local police departments or armed security service companies — he would have his company destroy them.

In conjunction with his first announcement in February, Stack issued this statement:

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Is Edward Stack Insane?

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, May 14, 2018: 

Two lifetimes of blood, sweat, effort, and tears have gone into building Dick’s Sporting Goods from a small bait and tackle fishing supply store in Binghamton, New York into a corporate giant. Its chain of 610 stores plus Field & Stream, Affinity Sports, Golf Galaxy, Oshman’s Sporting Goods, and True Runner generates, until recently, $8 billion in annual sales with a total asset value of over $4 billion.

So why would Dick’s Chairman and CEO, Edward Stack, son of founder Dick Stack, want to burn the place down, just to make an ideological statement? The NRA has called his actions “irrational” and “strange” while other observers have called them bizarre, inconsistent, and hypocritical.

It started in February, following the high school shooting in Florida on Valentine’s Day. One of his stores sold a shotgun to the perp and Stack felt personally responsible even though it wasn’t used in the massacre. Something had to be done, he felt, even if it was irrational. In announcing that his stores would no longer sell AR-15 semi-automatic rifles, nor handguns to anyone under age 21, nor “high capacity” (over 10 rounds) magazines, Stack said:

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What a Week for President Trump!

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Friday, May 11, 2018: 

It began on Monday with the resignation by one of the president’s fiercest critics who has been after him for years: Eric Schneiderman, the now freshly disgraced New York attorney general. He resigned Monday night when it was revealed that this lowlife – a supporter of “women’s rights” – had physically abused not one but four women “with whom he was romantically involved.” Schneiderman is now a target himself: New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced he was launching an investigation into the four women’s charges that were published by the New Yorker magazine.

On Tuesday, Trump’s policies were touted by winners in three states’ primaries, blunting the expectations of a “blue wave” that Democrats have been predicting was about to engulf both houses of Congress in November.

On Wednesday, Rasmussen reported polls showing that voters are finally getting tired of the endless, useless, fruitless investigations by Mueller into Trump’s alleged collusion with the Russians during his campaign. Rasmussen wrote:

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Pro-gun “Sanctuary” Counties in Illinois Are Putting Democrats in a Bind

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, May 7, 2018:  

When Effingham County, Illinois, passed a resolution declaring itself a sanctuary county for gun owners, The New American failed to give sufficient credit to Effingham’s state attorney Brian Kibler for generating the idea. Joe Thoele, an Effingham County board member, took the idea and ran with it, persuading seven of the eight members of the board to pass it. Said Kibler at the time: “If you can be a sanctuary county for undocumented immigrants, why can’t you be one for firearms [owners]?”

It was later revealed that Kibler’s use of the word “sanctuary” was deliberate and intentional:

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Latest Poll: Republicans Likely to Gain at Least Six Senate Seats in November

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, May 4, 2018:

Morning Consult, founded in 2013, is not the typical political opinion pollster. Instead of polling small samples designed to reflect the general public’s opinion on political issues (ranging from 500 to 1,500 contacts and then extracting results), the company surveys 5,000 people every day.

For its latest survey, “2018 Midterms,” the company said the results were compiled from surveys of more than 275,000 registered voters across the United States from February 1 through the end of April. And it’s bad news for Democrats hoping to take back the Senate:

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Recession in Trump’s First Term?

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, May 3, 2018:

A historical anomaly is making investors nervous: Since 1909 every single Republican president has experienced a recession during his first term in office. Ryan Vlastelica, writing for MarketWatch, calls it a “curious trend” that could serve as “yet another reason to be cautious” about holding stocks now.

There are certainly plenty of reasons to be cautious:

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The “Blue Wave” in November Diminishing to Merely a Hope and a Dream for Democrats

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Thursday, May 3, 2018: 

John LeBoutillier, a one-term Republican congressman from New York more than 30 years ago and now a self-styled political commentator, thinks the Republicans are in deep trouble come November. Boasting two degrees from Harvard, LeBoutillier has a distinctive progressive viewpoint on the matter. Nevertheless, taking that into account, LeBoutillier writes that the “2018 midterm defeat will be even worse than Republicans let on.” He asked rhetorically at TheHill.com, “Will the Democrats win back control of one or both houses of Congress? And is the blue wave so big that it might hurt GOP control of state houses and governorships [as well]? Seven months is still too far away to predict anything, but there are preliminary indications that should deeply worry Republicans.”

He’s not the only one declaring a takeover of at least the House of Representatives by Democrats in November. Politicos tout the historic tendency of the incumbent party to lose seats in both houses in the midterm elections, but with President Donald Trump on the political scene, Democrats are hoping the distaste many have for him and his policies will turn into votes come November.

Out of the blue comes this from the Reuters/Ipsos poll results, which were released on Monday: the critical core, the dependable base among millennials that Democrats are relying on to carry them to victory in November, is melting away.

When millennials aged 18 to 34 were asked this question two years ago, their answers were reflected in how they voted in the 2016 Presidential election:

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More Fake News: NRA Bans Guns at Its Own Convention!

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, May 1, 2018:

It all started with an Associated Press (AP) tweet: “NRA bans guns at President Trump, VP Pence speeches during it’s [sic] annual meeting in Dallas.” The Washington Post jumped on it, as if it were real news, offering a misleading headline to its story: “The NRA said guns will be banned during a Pence speech; Parkland students see hypocrisy.”

This likely reflected a tweet from one of the “heroes” of the Parkland, Florida, massacre, Cameron Kasky, who is credited with founding the anti-gun group March for Our Lives. Tweeted Kasky: “The NRA has evolved into such a hilarious parody of itself.”

The Huffington Post chimed in:

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Banks, Credit Card Companies Attack Second Amendment

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, April 30, 2018: 

When the Bank of America (BofA) and Citigroup announced changes in their policies earlier this month restricting loans to companies that sell or manufacture firearms, Senator Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, sent a letter to the CEO of each bank:

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The War Against Guns Ramps Up

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, April 30, 2018: 

This writer remembers a time in this country when a customer could purchase a firearm over the counter at Sears. “Did you want some ammunition with your purchase, sir?” and out the door. No showing of a driver’s license. No Form 4473 to complete. No phone calls to the NICS to see if you had a criminal record.

Then came the Gun Control Act of 1968, and the war against the private ownership of firearms began in earnest. Most Americans weren’t aware that war had been declared until 1994, with the Clinton gun law banning semi-automatic rifles.

Since then, the NRA and its variants have awakened from their slumber, and, with the help of the internet, the war has been joined.

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Would Ed Stack Burn His Company to the Ground Just to Make a Point?

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, April 23, 2018: 

Dick Stack opened his first store – a “bait and tackle” fishing supplies store – in Binghamton, New York in 1948. By the time his son Eddie was born in 1955, Dick had grown the business to include general sports merchandise, and by the early 1960s he built his first store, calling it “Dick’s Sporting Goods.” When son Eddie entered the business in 1977 they had two stores. Eddie had a knack, and the business grew. Dick let Eddie take over the business entirely in 1984 (Eddie was 29) and the two-store business became a chain operation by the early 1990s.

Today the business has 800 stores mostly in the Eastern United States, and owns and operates a golf specialty retailer, Golf Galaxy, True Runner and Field & Stream (no relation to the publication). Its Sports Authority and Golfsmith operations went bankrupt in 2016 and 2017, respectively. The business turned Eddie into a billionaire.

And, apparently, a liberal. When the Parkland, Florida massacre took place in February, Eddie issued a press release saying that one of his stores had sold a shotgun to the perp although he didn’t use it in the massacre. But Eddie used the incident as a reason to stop selling so-called “assault” rifles – semi-automatic (one squeeze, one shot) rifles at his primary outlets, numbering about 650 at the time. He said:

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Many of the articles on Light from the Right first appeared on either The New American or the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor.