It’s a way to put small businesses, out of business. It’s the large corporations that are beating up on the small guys.
You can either believe the liberal gun grabbing mob, or you can accept reality – guns save lives:
A homeowner in Orangeburg, S.C. shot and killed a home invader after the criminal used a shovel to break a back window to gain entry to the house. Neighbors expressed support for the armed citizen and were grateful for the fact that his daughter was not at home at the time of the incident.
A neighbor had a run in with the deceased. He had broken in to their house and ended up being held at gunpoint until police arrived.
How does it end if neither homeowner has a gun?
Rep. Sam Graves’s office released a statement regarding a recent vote of his:
U.S. Congressman Sam Graves (MO-06) today voted to strengthen the nation’s student loan programs. With Graves’ support, the House passed the Smarter Solutions for Students Act (H.R. 1911), which would move all Federal student loans, minus Perkins loans, to a market-based interest rate. This would alleviate the need for Congress to act each year when it comes to determining interest rates. If Congress fails to pass new legislation before July 1, interest rates on subsidized Federal student loans are set to double from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent.
“This commonsense legislation makes it easier for students and their parents to plan for post-secondary education,” said Congressman Graves. “It removes both politicians and politics from the business of student loan interest rates, so that students aren’t penalized if Congress fails to act. This is also the fiscally responsible move, as we will save the Federal government $4 billion with this change.”
The market-based approach to student loans was proposed by President Obama in his Fiscal Year 2014 Budget. However, unlike the President’s plan, the House legislation includes a reasonable cap to protect borrowers against excessive interest rates.
There’s a involuntary gag reflex when I see government programs described as “market based.”
As if tying a government only loan program to the market somehow makes it a good thing.
And it’s still not addressing the root problem: the unConstitutional use of federal monies.
Which reminded me of this (watch yourself, that’s a pdf):
For too long, Congress has ignored the proper limits imposed by the Constitution on the federal government. Further, it has too often drafted unclear and muddled laws, leaving to an unelected judiciary the power to interpret what the law means and by what authority the law stands. This lack of respect for the clear Constitutional limits and authorities has allowed Congress to create ineffective and costly programs that add to the massive deficit year after year. We will require each bill moving through Congress to include a clause citing the specific constitutional authority upon which the bill is justified.
Remember that? When the Tea Party heard about that pledge, a lot of folks were all
And Congress is doing it.
So Republicans and Democrats are following the new rule. But has there been any impact on how the House operates? Experts in congressional procedure say the impact is only symbolic.
They agreed that the Republicans have kept their promise, even in judgment-call cases like Pitts’ justification. But the experts added that they didn’t think statements like these are especially meaningful, since the justifications — like many arguments about the Constitution itself — are matters of interpretation.
Here’s how HR 1911 was justified, according to the Congressional Record:
By Mr. KLINE:
H.R. 1911 .
Congress has the power to enact this legislation pursuant to the following:
Article I, section 8 of the Constitution of the United States
And what is Article I, Section 8?
It’s Rep. John Conyers’s famous Good & Welfare clause:
The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts andExcises shall be uniform throughout the United States;
That’s right. The Republicans are using the General Welfare clause as their excuse.
And, as faithful All American Readers, you know that is a pile of garbage.
I don’t expect Republicans to start repealing everything that’s unConstitutional.
I understand the idea of incremental change. Pass what you can to move the ball towards the goal. I get that.
But this isn’t even incremental change.
This is Republicans using the left’s argument, that the Constitution is a living document, for justification for their legislation.
And the justification isn’t part of the bill. It’s just entered into the Congressional Record.
It has no teeth. They could cite the Seventeenth Amendment as justification, and it would have as much impact.
It’s a just business as usual with a thin veneer of conservatism.
I can see the people who came up with this explaining to Republicans worried about it.
“Hey, wait a minute! We can’t justify half the stuff we do! This will be impossible to do.”
“Don’t worry. It’s meaningless. It just sounds good and the people love it. It won’t change anything.”
Then it dawns on them and they both smile knowingly, and laugh.
TYRANNY: IRS Agent Lois Lerner Asked Illinois Candidate to Never Run Again And She’d Drop FEC Case Against Him
According to the Illinois Review, the IRS’s Lois Lerner demanded a Republican candidate for U.S. Senator never run again in order for an investigation by the Federal Election Commission against him to be dropped.
This happened back in 1996.
Before Lois Lerner (photo right) took us before the federal judge, her last offer was for me to promise to never run for office again. That was always part of their demands,” Salvi said. “Before that last offer, another FEC representative that reported to Lerner wanted $200,000 and a promise not to run.”
Knowing his $1.1 million campaign loan to himself was legal, Salvi rejected the initial settlement offer from FEC attorney Colleen Sealander. In later conversations, Sealander lowered the amount to $100,000, then $40,000, but always with the additional promise to never run for office again.
“Every time we talked, I refused the offer, and Colleen said she’d have to check with someone,” Salvi said. “I finally told her I’d like to talk to whomever she reported. That’s when I got a call from Lois Lerner.”
During that call, Salvi said, he explained to Lerner exactly what happened — that while the loan to himself was legal, there may be a difference of opinion on how the loan was reported to the FEC. Salvi explained it was a simple matter and said he thought Lerner would suggest an agreeable solution and dismiss the Democratic National Committee’s complaint.
But that was not Lerner’s reaction. Instead, that’s when she said to Salvi, “Promise me you’ll never run for office again, and we’ll drop the case.”
Salvi said he asked Lerner if she would be willing to put the offer into writing.
“We don’t do things that way,” Salvi said Lerner replied.
Salvi queried how then could such an agreement be enforced.
According to Salvi, Lerner replied: “You’ll find out.”
When Salvi won in court, the threats went from implied, to overt.
Click here and read the rest.
From Sharyl Attkisson (I mean, who else) comes word that when officials talked to the hospital that treated Chris Stevens, they told them to list his body as “John Doe:”
On Tuesday, Sept. 11, around the 10 p.m. hour (4 p.m. ET), State Department Information Officer Sean Smith’s body had been pulled from the burned out U.S. mission, but nobody was able to locate Stevens in the smoky building. In the 11 p.m. hour (5 p.m. ET), a group of Libyans, possibly looters, found Stevens and pulled him out of the U.S. mission. Somebody transported him to Benghazi Medical Center where CPR was attempted. Initially, it’s believed that doctors did not know who Stevens was. An unidentified man speaking Arabic used a cell phone Stevens had in his possession to call the U.S. embassy in Tripoli (the number was programmed into the phone). He seemed to want Americans to come to the hospital to retrieve Stevens, but U.S. officials were suspicious. The hospital was known to be under the influence of hostile militia and Embassy officials sensed a possible trap, so they opted not to attempt to send a U.S. rescue team now waiting at Benghazi’s airport.
A familiar local to whom Americans refer as “Babakar” sent word to the U.S. embassy that Stevens had, indeed, passed away. Babakar sent some of his associates to recover Stevens’ body at the hospital. When hospital officials asked what name should be entered on the death certificate, U.S. officials relayed the message to use “John Doe.” Babakar’s associates eventually transported Stevens’ body to the airport where it was turned over to Americans.
The “official” line is Washington did this so there wasn’t a big to-do at the hospital.
An anonymous source told Attkisson it was “to avoid drawing undue attention to the importance of the victim as Americans rushed to figure out how to recover Stevens’ body and return it to the U.S.”
Which I could see playing out a little like:
DC: “You’ve got the body of Ambassador Stevens?”
Libyan Hospital Dude: “Yeah. What do you want me to do with him?”
DC: “Um, list him under ‘John Doe’ and don’t tell anyone who he is.”
Dude: “Sure. Because I’m totally going to cover for you guys against al Qaeda.”
We just let our ambassador die. What guy at a hospital is going to keep our secrets from a bunch of terrorists?
The story might be completely true. Maybe they did tell them to list him as “John Doe” for that reason.
I’m just saying it was kind of naive to think they’d keep a secret.
It’s more like the terrorists didn’t bother messing with him once he was dead.
This is hard to believe:
Most Syrian rebel fighters do not want democracy and the country’s civil war is producing ever worse atrocities and increasing radicalization, independent U.N. investigators said on Tuesday.
Speaking to reporters in Paris, Brazilian expert Paulo Pinheiro said his team of investigators had documented horrific crimes on both sides, although the scale of those committed by President Bashar al-Assad’s forces was greater.
“It was said the rebels were angels, but there is only a minority of fighters with a democratic history who believe in the Syrian mosaic and want a state for all,” he said.
“The majority of rebels are very far from having democratic thoughts and have other aspirations.”
The U.N. Security Council is set to blacklist Syria’s Islamist al-Nusra Front as an alias of al Qaeda in Iraq. Foreign fighters, many of them from Libya, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Iraq and Egypt, have also radicalized the rebels.
I know. If only someone knew about this, say, over a year ago:
“There’s about a million Christians in Syria, one of the largest populations of Christians are in Syria. They are not necessarily siding with the rebels because many of the rebels are extremist radical Islamists such as Al-Nusra elements of al-Qaida. And there is concern that the Christians will not be tolerated, will be wiped out if the rebels win,” Paul said.
Rand Paul said this last year.
Meanwhile, Sen. John McCain spent Memorial Day with them.
Kind of what I was thinking.
Sen. Claire McCaskill visited the University of Missouri yesterday and spoke to students about the Federal Student Loan Program and her desire to lower the interest rates so students aren’t burdened by massive debt when they finish college.
A noble goal, right?
There’s a few things about this that need pointed out. Starting with the whole “federal” part of the student loan program.
When there is a product or service, a free market will dictate a price that is mutually beneficial to both the buyer and the seller.
If you want an apple, you go to the market and find someone selling apples. If you are happy with the price, you gladly pay the person. If you aren’t, you find a seller with an equally good product but a better price and buy from them.
If, however, a third party enters into the situation and offers a guaranteed loan for the apple, there will be more buyers due to the ability to pay for the fruit. The increase in buyers, or the increase in demand, will result in a rise in prices as the supply hasn’t changed.
There are still only so many apples, but more people now have money to buy them.
Because the price of apples is rising, the third party decides they need to increase the amount they will loan to people to buy apples, and the cycle continues ever upward.
This is basic economics. It’s the theory of supply and demand.
Now, replace “apple” with “college education.”
The theory doesn’t change because the items being purchased changed.
This is why college tuition is skyrocketing and students are finding themselves under a mountain of debt after graduation.
There is evidence to suggest that the HEA has been a factor in rising tuition costs. Rising tuition costs then result in political pressure to expand the HEA and provide tax credits and deductions for higher education expenditures; this in turn increases tuition
costs, which leads to further expansion of HEA and use of the tax code to affect taxpayer behavior. This is the type of cycle that Hayek and Ludwig von Mises suggest happens when government acts outside of its fundamental role and fails to take into account how the market works.
When I brought this fact of basic economics to Sen. Claire McCaskill’s attention, she said she’d never heard of such a thing before:
Of course, she didn’t address the question, because she can’t argue with basic economics.
So they use class warfare as a red herring to move towards the end game.
“Only the Rich Will Go To College”
When Sen. Claire McCaskill visited Northwest Missouri State University last year, she started her speech with some old fashioned class warfare.
Here’s what she said:
“I’ve had three seventeen year olds, and I would not loan money to any of them.”
But she’ll be happy to give them your money and a lower interest rate.
However, that’s not the money line I want you to digest. It’s this one:
If the federal government…no longer backed these loans, and Pell grants were no longer available, who would go to college? The children of rich families would go to college.“
There is no more blatant example of class warfare to offer in this discussion.
In the world of a progressive like Sen. Claire McCaskill, she knows she doesn’t have facts or basic economics on her side, so her only path to success is through emotions like jealousy and anger.
As I pointed out above, her premise is fallacious. If the federal government were to stop guaranteeing loans, the market would not stay static. The prices wouldn’t stay where they are. They would have to react to something that dramatic.
With the removal of guaranteed money, do you think the prices would increase or decrease?
Basic economics tells us that when demand decreases, the price decreases.
She can’t tell students that. She has to point them toward the rich kids, or the jocks, and make them hate them.
Which is why Sen. McCaskill’s partner in this, Sen. Elizabeth “Fauxcahontas” Warren isn’t wasting any time piling on the class warfare, only she isn’t making rich kids the boogeyman. She’s going back to her old favorite: the banksters.
‘If the Federal Reserve can float trillions of dollars to large financial institutions at low interest rates to grow the economy, surely they can float the Department of Education the money to fund our students, keep us competitive, and grow our middle class.”
That is the logic behind the first piece of legislation from Harvard Law School professor-cum-Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren, introduced in the Senate two weeks ago. The Bank on Students Loan Fairness Act seeks to extend to students the same loan interest rates allegedly offered to the country’s chief financial institutions. Among the problems with the bill? Said interest rates for said greedy banks do not exist. But that is a minor detail in Warren’s latest exercise in cheap populism.
They claim all they want is to guarantee loans for American children, so they can go to college. But like almost everything a progressive does, that’s not the end-game. It’s just a play in their long game.
Incrementalism and Free College for All
One of the things conservatives need to understand is the idea of incrementalism.
The right doesn’t do this well. We want it all now.
Well, in our defense, we aren’t alone. The grassroots progressive wants it all right now too. But the leaders of the movement play a longer game, and they are fantastic at it.
In this case the end-game isn’t a guaranteed loan and low tuition rates.
It’s free college for everyone.
They don’t want people graduating college with massive student loans. Progressives want the government to pick up the tab for everything.
Those aren’t my words.
Behold, Sen. Elizabeth Warren:
[Christopher] Lydon asked why America is talking about containing the interest rate on college student loans when countries like Europe are sending students to school for free. Warren did not say outright that she wanted free education, but responded, “You preach to the choir on this one.”
Free tuition for all sounds pretty awesome, until it dawns on you:
Sweden has free tuition for all. How’s that working out for them?
Swedish colleges and universities are free. Yep. Totally free.
But students there still end up with a lot of debt. The average at the beginning of 2013 was roughly 124,000 Swedish krona ($19,000). Sure, the average US student was carrying about 30% more, at $24,800.
How is this possible? It all FREE!
While the costs of education are far lower than in the US, over the past two decades sometimes-hefty fees have become a fact of life for many European students. Britain got them in 1998 . Some German states instituted them after a federal ban on student fees was overturned in the courts. In fact, since 1995 more than half of the 25 OECD countries with available data on higher education have overhauled their college tuition policies at public institutions , with many adding or raising fees.
But the tuition’s free, right:
No, TANSTAAFL, I said:
Swedes who earn a salary on par with the average municipal worker contribute the equivalent of 70 percent of their monthly salaries in taxes, a new study has found.
Workers who earn 25,000 kronor ($3,810) per month end up paying 69 percent, or 17,200 kronor per month, in taxes, according to an analysis carried out bySwedbank.
According to Statistics Sweden, the average salary of a municipal worker in Sweden in 2011 was 25,000 kronor.
Meanwhile, two-child households earning 55,000 kronor per month contribute 38,000 kronor in taxes, Swedbank found.
All told, taxes account for Swedes’ largest monthly expense by far.
The idea of free tuition for all is attractive, if you ignore the reality that someone, somewhere has to pay for it.
And by someone, I mean you.
That’s the end-game. Progressives like McCaskill and Warren are content to take small steps, like making the federal government the source of student loans, because they know it’s still a step forward. It leads to the next step, like lowering interest rates.
Is there any doubt that someday, either one of these two or another Democrat will demand loans be made with no interest? It’s not too far after that to start wondering why students should have to borrow money for a “right.”
Step by step. Little by little. This is how the left works.
The road McCaskill and Warren want to go down leads to higher taxes for everyone, higher fees for students and doesn’t accomplish the goal they say they’re going to fix. All the industrialized nations that offer “free” college still have students graduating in debt.
Is there any reason to think Sen. Claire McCaskill and Sen. Elizabeth Warren know something that all of Europe doesn’t?
We know where they are, where they are going, how they’re doing it and Europe shows us how it will end up.
Perhaps, for once, the solution shouldn’t be sought in the failures other nations already discovered, but in the understanding of basic economics. The solution isn’t more meddling by an ever expanding central government, but in letting the market do what it does best.
Creating mutually beneficial agreements where everyone gets what they want.
Photo credit: daveynin
In 1968, Bobby Rush went AWOL from the Army and founded the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party. The Chicago BPP was full of gangsters. Rush would serve time in prison for an illegal weapons conviction.
When President Barack Obama was elected president, Rush wasted no time calling for a black man to be put in his Senate seat.
He’s a racist through and through.
Which is why this didn’t surprise me a bit:
Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) is highly critical of a proposal by Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) for mass arrests of 18,000 Gangster Disciples, telling the Sun-Times on Wednesday that Kirk’s approach is “headline grabbing” and an “upper-middle-class, elitist white boy solution to a problem he knows nothing about.”
Rush would know a thing or two about gangs, what with his history of founding them in Chicago.
Just so you know, here’s exactly what the elitist white boy said:
“I think it’s completely within the capability of the United States government to crush a major urban gang,” Kirk said. “Just think of what the greatest generation did here in Chicago, pretty much crushing the Capone organization.”
Using the federal government to destroy a murderous drug dealing organization? What kind of elitist white boy nonsense is that?
The only surprising part of Rush’s comment is that he didn’t call both Durbin and Kirk a couple of crackers.
Because Bobby Rush is a racist.