October 31, 2014

Secretary Of State Treason John Kerry Demands Israel Limit Religious Freedom For Jews

Any surprise that the scumbag who sold out his country and fellow soldiers during the Vietnam era would come out against religious freedom for Jews? Of course, given he is a part of the most anti-Semitic administration since the FDR years, why should we be surprised

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NY Times Editor Confirms That Paper Ignores Palestinian Racism And Anti-Semitism

The reason? It would get in the way of the Palestinian goal of getting an independent state. If opinion leaders were forced to acknowledge that said state would be an Islamo-Nazi tumor in the heart of Israel, there might be inconvenient questions asked.

Matt Seaton, staff editor for The New York Times opinion section, told a Twitter activist on Tuesday that the publication will not scrutinize Palestinian racism until Palestinians have a sovereign state of their own.

His comments were made in response to Tamar Sternthal, an analyst at the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA) who sarcastically mocked Seaten after he posted a link to a Times column accusing Israel of racism.

She wrote, “no kidding! @nytopinion hasn’t devoted a piece to Israeli racism in a whole month!” to which Seaton replied: “it’s equal opportunity opinion over here; aim to give voice to all sides of a debate over time.” Sternthal then asked, “So we can expect two hit pieces in the next month about Palestinian racism?”

“Sure,” Seaton said, “soon as they have sovereign state to discriminate with. Meanwhile, expect piece from cabinet min. on why they won’t.”

As one tweet in response noted, this is a double standard. After all, the Times covers the genocidal words and deeds of ISIS despite the fact they do not have a state of their own.

I’ve said in the past that Israel needs to push the Palestinians into the sea, just as the Palestinians insist they will do to Israel. Maybe the time has come for Americans to push the NY Times and those who facilitate Jew-hatred into the sea as well.

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Virgin Galactic Space Catastrophe

A setback for commercial space travel – and especially space tourism.

A witness says Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo exploded during a test flight over California’s Mojave Desert.

Photographer Ken Brown says the space tourism craft was released from the plane that carries it to high altitude, ignited its rocket motor and then exploded.

Brown says there is wreckage in the desert north of Mojave Air and Space Port.

The California Highway Patrol says there is one fatality and one major injury.

SpaceShipTwo is typically flown by two pilots.

Virgin Galactic confirms the loss of the spaceship but has given no details.

More details as they become available.

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Save Mary Landrieu From Racism And Sexism

Vote for her opponent so she can return home to Washington, DC and never set foot in such a hateful place as Louisiana.

Senator Mary Landrieu said Thursday she thinks one of the reasons she is losing her campaign for re-election is that the state that voted her into office is sexist. Landrieu also said that President Obama is unpopular in her state because of his race.

Speaking with NBC’s Chuck Todd, Landrieu said, “I’ll be very, very honest with you. The South has not always been the friendliest place for African-Americans.”

Pointing to herself Landrieu continued, “It’s not always been a good place for women to present ourselves. It’s more of a conservative place.”

Let’s see – you are out of step with the voters of Louisiana and you no longer live there. You have been found to be a particularly corrupt member of a party noted for corruption. You have no respect for the people Louisiana and have publicly insulted them. Could that maybe have some connection to the alleged “hostility”?

But don’t be surprised by Landrieu’s lies. They are part and parcel of the Democrat strategy of stirring up race hatred for their own electoral benefit – including blaming the GOP for incidents committed by card carrying Democrats.

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Democrats Resort To Voter Intimidation

These letters are reason enough to vote against the Party of Obama.

Democrats are telling voters that they had better head to the polls — or else.

The New York State Democratic Committee is bullying people into voting next week with intimidating letters warning that it can easily find out which slackers fail to cast a ballot next Tuesday.

“Who you vote for is your secret. But whether or not you vote is public record,” the letter says.

“We will be reviewing voting records . . . to determine whether you joined your neighbors who voted in 2014.”

It ends with a line better suited to a mob movie than a major political party: “If you do not vote this year, we will be interested to hear why not.”

There are, of course, any number of reasons why someone might choose not to vote. I think most of them boil down to the individual not giving a damn about politics and elections, and I find that sad. But it is a part of the American tradition for some folks to exercise their right by abstaining from casting a ballot – just as it is a part of the American tradition for some to exercise their freedom of religion to abstain from involvement in religious activity. No American has to answer to a political party for making the choice not to vote – and to tell Americans “we are watching you and will call you to account for failing to vote” is positively un-American.

But then again, that is the Democrat Party – un-American to the core. So may I encourage you to get out to vote – and to vote Republican in order to make it clear that such thuggishness is beyond the pale.

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Note To Charles Rangel

You made this stupid statement in a campaign speech Thursday.

"We have to win. We have to be able to send a national message with Andrew Cuomo. And the thing is: Everything we believe in — everything we believe in — they hate. They don't disagree — they hate! They think if you didn't come from Europe 30 years ago, you didn't even make it. Some of them believe that slavery isn't over and they and think they won the Civil War!" Rangel shouted.

Let’s dissect that claim.

1) How does a victory by the hereditary governor of a liberal state send any sort of message?

2) Did you sleep through the administrations of Reagan and both Bushes? There’s where you found hate. Heck, we know that one prominent liberal even colluded with the Soviets to beat Reagan, and Democrats regularly called for the murder of George W. Bush. That constitutes hate, not our policy disagreements with Obama.

3) Republicans support LEGAL immigration – including increasing the current level of legal immigration. What we don’t support is flagrant disregard of American law via an immigration amnesty.

4) Republicans do believe slavery was over. We defeated it 150 years ago, and even amended the constitution over Democrat objections to ensure that the scourge of human bondage will never return to our shores. Your party then spent the next century trying to keep it in place via

5) As noted in item #4, we DID win the Civil War. Your party – the party of slavery, secession, segregation, Jim Crow and the Klan – lost that war.

Of course, what can we expect from a corrupt buffoon like Charlie?

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October 30, 2014

Weasel Of The WeeK

Fanfare, everyone!It?s time to present this week's statuette of shame, The Golden Weasel!!

Every Tuesday, the Council nominates some of the slimiest, most despicable characters in public life for some deed of evil, cowardice or corruption they?ve performed. Then we vote to single out one particular Weasel for special mention, to whom we award the statuette of shame, our special, 100% plastic Golden Weasel. This week's nominees were all slime-worthy,but in the end the winner by a nose was....

CNN 'News Anchor' Carol Costello!!

 Nice Deb :Although CNN News Anchor Carol Costello shouldn't have a job after her disturbing antics, last week, she does deserve to be considered for the esteemed title of Weasel of the Week in my humble opinion.

In the shocking segment, Costello could barely contain her glee over hearing new audio of Bristol Palin describing her assault at a party in Alaska a few weeks ago. In fact, Costello called it "quite possibly the best minute and a half of audio we?ve ever come across.?

Costello then proceeded to describe the ?massive brawl? and before playing the audio she told her viewers ?so sit back and enjoy.?

What you were asked to ?sit back and enjoy? was the sound of a tearful and near hysterical Bristol Palin describing to the police the physical assault she had just experienced.

Despite overwhelming approbation from fellow journalists and conservatives appalled by her hypocrisy, Costello has thus far resisted offering an apology on the air for gloating over Bristol Palin's distress, instead opting to offer a weak and weaselly apology to Politico.

Virginia Right! :I am going to go with Carol Costello of CNN who was absolutely bubbly about Bristol Palin  being assaulted.

People that hate Sarah Palin so much ought to be in jail. There is no place in America for such hate by proxy.

Yes, this weeks' honors went to Carol Costello, who yet again proved that the real war on women is being carried on by the Left, and that women who have left the Left's Plantation and think for themselves are fair game for pretty much anything, no matter how vile.We all know that if it was Wendy Davis, Debby BlabberMouth Schultz or Rachel Maddow getting assaulted, you know Carol Costello's jowls would have been quivering in outrage and she'd be yowling like an outraged alley cat.

Actually, considering CNN's ratings, I'm kinda surprised so many people noticed anything this 53-year-old partisan hack was doing, even in morning prime time. But they did. As a matter of fact, there's even a #firecarolcostello hash tag on Twitter, and a CNN Should Fire Carol Costello Facebook page.Apparently a lot of people found Carol Costello's disgusting schadenfreude over the assault on Bristol Palin nauseating, although her network doesn't seem to since they haven't forced her to make an on air apology - yet.

Not only that,but other instances of Ms. Costello's particular brand of hypocrisy have come to her on-air attack on ESPN analyst Stephen A. Smith, who she shrieked should be fired or be suspended for  comments he made about the Ray Rice controversy after he apologized for them on the air.

It's the caro Costellos of the world who make awarding the statuette of shame such a gratifying experience.

Well, we have the Golden Weasel all ready to add to the other souvenirs Carol Costello has undoubtedly collected over her career. However, at the express request of Sarah Palin, we sent the Weasel to the Governor so that she could have the pleasure of personally awarding it to Ms. Costello. From what Mama Grizzly said, if I understood her correctly, she wants to make a point of 'giving it to her good' in person and is willing to come down to New York to spend some private time with Ms. Costello to 'let her have it'.

Seemed like the right thing to do to me..

And BTW, when I happened to catch a clip of  Governor Palin on FOX this week with Stuart Varney she sounded great,  hasn't lost any of the old fire and hinted at running for office again...

Well, there it is! 

Check back next Tuesday to see who next week's nominees for Weasel of the Week are!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher?s Forum, and  remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It?s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won?t want to miss it...or any of the other fantabulous Watcher's Council content.

And don?t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..?cause we?re cool like that, y'know?

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October 29, 2014

Is BuzzFeed Racist?

Looks like it to me.


Don't think so? Insert "Black", "Hispanic", "Jewish", or "Gay" in those titles and tell me if you would find them to be innocuous. If your answer is no, then you have to consider these to be equally racist -- or confess yourself to be a racist.

H/T WeaselZippers

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Message To Voter ID Opponents -- Especially Those Who Call It Racist


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Contrast The Obama Girls’ Lunches With Those Of Your Public School Kids


Michelle Obama inserted herself into the lunch choices of every American public school student in the name of fighting obesity and promoting health. Why didn't she start with her own kids’ school?


While Michelle Obama’s skimpy school lunch mandates have been widely rejected by students and schools, the elite private school attended by both Obama daughters will be serving chicken wings and potato chips on Wednesday.

Sidwell Friends is the elite private school with a $36,264 tuition per child where President Obama sent his daughters instead of Cardozo high school, a government-run school in Washington, D.C.

After Wednesday’s chicken wings, on Thursday Obama’s daughters can get a Cuban sandwich. Pasco County Schools in Florida had to eliminate Cuban sandwiches because they violated Michelle Obama’s lunch standards.

Next week, students at Sidwell Friends can enjoy Philly Cheese Steaks; and they will have meatball submarines the following week. Veterans Day is not a holiday at Sidwell Friends, and beef nachos are on the menu. Nachos, wings, chips and cheesesteaks – lunch fare most American kids can only dream about now.


Guess the Obama girls are headed towards the same wide-load sign their mama needs while public school kids will eat this.

And if the kids complain?


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Wendy Davis Fail!

No, not her campaign for governor – she is only down by 20% in that one. I mean her effort to sell her self-serving memoir, which has failed even worse.

Wendy Davis’ book is having a tough time of it. Despite enormous levels of media buzz, Nielsen BookScan numbers provided to Slate by a publishing source show only 4,317 copies of the memoir, called Forgetting to Be Afraid, have been sold since its Sept. 9 publication.

Nielsen BookScan doesn’t include all book sales, notably sales at many independent retailers, so the actual number of copies sold is probably higher, although still likely below 6,000. As a point of comparison, Elizabeth Warren’s memoir, A Fighting Chance, sold more than 70,000 copies in its first few months on shelves. And David Limbaugh’s book Jesus on Trial, which was published the day before Davis’, has sold about 65,000 copies, including 6,778 just last week, according to BookScan.

Wow – I guess the effort to use her campaign and campaign funds to enrich herself though book sales didn’t pay off.

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Are Today’s Young People Going To Vote Like My Generation

In the 1970s, young people were liberal. In 1980 and 184, however, a generation of young people embraced Ronald Reagan and the GOP. After eight years of Barack Obama, could this be happening again?

A new Harvard Institute of Politics (IOP) poll of 18- to 29- year-olds finds a majority, 51%, who say they will “definitely be voting” in the November midterm elections prefer a Republican-run Congress. Only 47% favor a Democrat-controlled Congress.

That’s a significant shift from the 2010 midterm elections, when IOP found 55% preferred Democrat control and 43% prefer Republican control.

Among those most likely to vote, President Obama’s job approval rating is only 42, just above his lowest mark of 41%. Fifty-six percent disapprove.

And like the IOP’s April results, Obama’s approval is underwater on every issue polled:

The Economy 36% – 60%
ObamaCare 37% – 59%
The Budget Deficit 31% – 65%
Foreign 35% -60%
Immigration 35% – 61%
Race Relations 47% – 49%
Obama is losing support among young Hispanics. Only 49% of young Hispanics now approve of Obama’s performance and 46% disapprove. That’s the lowest rating among young Hispanics since the IOP began tracking the administration in 2009. It’s also a significant drop from the 60% found in April 2014 and a huge decline from the 81% found in November 2009.

And like the 27% in 2010, 26% of those under the age of 30 say that they will “definitely be voting” in the fall. Worse for Democrats, traditional Republican constituencies seem to be showing more enthusiasm than Democrat ones for participating in the upcoming midterm elections and are statistically more likely to say they will “definitely be voting.”

That figure for Hispanic voters is important. For one, it mirrors what I see among my students on both the high school and college levels – there is a strong distaste for Obama. If that translates over to support for Republicans this year and in 2016, we could see something akin to the Reagan Revolution all over again powered by a significant portion of the youth and the Hispanic population.

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Holder Says “Shut Up” – Holder Needs To “Eff Off”

After all, he is the only Attorney General in US history to ever be held in contempt of Congress for failing to comply with a duly issued subpoena. Until he is willing to disclose what is legally required to be disclosed, he has no business telling others not to disclose information.

Attorney General Eric Holder again lashed out at sources revealing details from the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury reviewing the case of Michael Brown’s death, instructing them to simply “shut up.”

Holder was interviewed Wednesday in Washington by MSNBC’s Jonathan Capehart, who asked him about reports that Ferguson police chief Tom Jackson will resign from office.

The attorney general reacted with annoyance. “I think that somebody, these leakers, have made the determination that they’re trying to somehow shape public opinion about this case,” he said. ”It is inconsistent with the way in which we conduct investigations, and especially grand-jury investigations which are supposed to be secret.”

“I said I’m exasperated — it’s a nice way of saying I’m mad,” he continued. “That’s just not how things should be done with people in law enforcement.”

“Whoever the sources of the leaks are need to shut up,” the attorney general said.

Remember – Holder went to Ferguson to shape public opinion and stoke the flames of racial tension for the political gain of his incompetent boss. How dare he attack others for trying to shape public opinion by disclosing that the narrative he and other race hustlers have been pushing is a thin tissue of lies!

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Parker Backs Down On Subpoenas – Won’t Admit They Were Fundamentally Flawed

It is a victory -- but fails to address the real problem with the subpoenas.

The City of Houston will withdraw its controversial subpoenas of five pastors tied to a lawsuit over the city's equal rights ordinance, Mayor Annise Parker announced at a news conference Wednesday.

The announcement came amid a national firestorm about the subpoenas, which have prompted outrage among Christian conservatives. Parker said two meetings yesterday, one with local pastors and another with national clergy, persuaded her to pull the subpoenas altogether.

"The goal of the subpoenas is to defend against the lawsuit and not to provoke a public debate," Parker said.

She is ordering the subpoenas removed for the sake of Houston, not because the request were in any way illegal or intended to intrude on religious liberties, Parker said.

Frankly, the request for sermons (many of which were posted online or available for purchase from the churches) was not the biggest problem. For that matter, the request for materials directly related to the petition process were not outrageous. The problem was that the subpoenas went far beyond that and included demands for church teachings about homosexuality and private communications about public figures – and, even more troubling, private pastoral communication that touched on issues. For example, the demand for all letters and emails about homosexuality would have included an email to a pastor from a parent who discovered that their child was gay and seeking spiritual counseling about how best to be a loving parent and a faithful Christian. Such matters are clearly not of public concern, but would have been put in the public record by the discovery process.

Parker clearly realized that she was going to get slapped down in the court of law, just as she did in the court of public opinion. Too bad that she had thought she could get away with this in the first place.

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October 28, 2014

"Recovering" Economy Collapsing?

Some signs point that way.

New orders for manufactured durable goods in September decreased $3.2 billion or 1.3 percent to $241.6 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau announced today. This decrease, down two consecutive months, followed an 18.3 percent August decrease. Excluding transportation, new orders decreased 0.2 percent. Excluding defense, new orders decreased 1.5 percent.

Transportation equipment, also down two consecutive months, led the decrease, $2.8 billion or 3.7 percent to $73.4 billion.

* * *

Nondefense new orders for capital goods in September decreased $4.6 billion or 5.4 percent to $82.0 billion. Shipments increased $0.4 billion or 0.5 percent to $80.2 billion. Unfilled orders increased $1.8 billion or 0.2 percent to $733.3 billion. Inventories increased $1.1 billion or 0.6 percent to $184.9 billion.

That recovery we were supposedly having? Looks like a mirage.

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Let’s Make It Right

Yesterday I wrote about Chicago pastor Corey Booker and the theft at his church in response to his endorsement of the Republican gubernatorial candidate in Illinois. Others have gone further and noted that something more needs to be done than offering an expression of outrage. We need to make Pastor Booker and his church whole after our mutual political opponents have attacked him for the crime of RWB – “Republican While Black”.

New Beginnings Church of Chicago is trying to purchase property near their sanctuary in order to open a community center for the neighborhood. Project Hood needs to raise $450,000 in order to reach their goal – a goal that suffered a setback when money dedicated to the Project Hood was stolen in retaliation for Pastor Booker’s political activity. In order to help them out, click here, and be sure to earmark your offering to Project Hood in the drop-down box. And let’s not merely make up what was stolen – estimated at $8,000 -- let’s help them raise all the money needed for Project Hood in a single outpouring of support.

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October 27, 2014

A Time For Choosing

A half century ago tonight, the Barry Goldwater presidential campaign had Ronald Reagan, then an actor, give a speech that rallied the troops in what was then a doomed cause. The speech Reagan gave offered a vision of America that moved millions.

Two years later, in 1966, Reagan would be elected Governor of California. Two years after that he would be a favorite son candidate for President. In 1976, in the wake of the disaster that was Watergate, Reagan would mount a challenge to President Gerald Ford and nearly win the Republican nomination. In 1980, Reagan would succeed in winning the Republican nomination and defeat President Jimmy Carter in the general election. What followed were eight of the brightest years of the last half century for this country – years that changed the political dialogue in America. Ask any American, Republican or Democrat, who has lived through the last half century who the two greatest presidents of that period has been, and he or she will undoubtedly include Reagan on the list because of the accomplishments of those eight years.

John Fund of National Review makes this observation.

The fact that in our overly-sensitive and easily offended age that such stirring rhetoric is so rare is a partial indictment of where our politics has failed. While issues come and go, there are fundamental questions of America’s future and place in the world that need to be addressed in overarching terms. That’s what Reagan’s “The Speech” was all about. We need leaders who will speak in such terms again.

As we stand on the brink of a midterm election that could be a watershed for American, can the GOP find a new Ronald Reagan to articulate our vision and lead us in the direction of freedom and prosperity?

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Tolerance, Democrat Style -- Part II

Because bigotry is a Democrat family value, don't you know.


An attack on state Senate candidate Mark Miloscia uses an anti-Catholic caricature to accuse him of representing “the people of the Vatican” instead of “the people of Federal Way.”

The image, on an anonymous website attacking Federal Way Republican Miloscia, circulated Friday on Twitter and drew a prompt rebuke from Miloscia’s opponent, Shari Song.

* * *

The cartoonish picture shows Miloscia in a papal crown holding a cross on a string of rosary beads and a suitcase with a Confederate flag. It dubs him “Mississippi Mark,” an apparent reference to his birthplace where he lived as a small child before his family moved to New York. Another post on the website compares “Pope Mark” with Pope Francis in an attempt to cast Miloscia’s views as extreme by modern-day papal standards.

Miloscia is a conservative Catholic from Federal Way who opposes abortion rights, same-sex marriage and the death penalty. Formerly a Democratic state representative, he lobbied for local Catholic dioceses before switching parties this year and running for the Senate.

Yes, Democrat Shari Song says she "does not condone" this sort of bigotry -- but interestingly enough, she does not condemn and denounce it. Moreover, her spokesperson indicates that the campaign knows who the perpetrator of this bigotry is, but will not publicly disclose who the bigot is. Song has even gone so far as to say “I don’t believe they are anti-Catholic or intended it in that way.”

You can bet that Democrats would be demanding scalps if the situation were reversed and a Republican were protecting someone disseminating anything even remotely like this. And you can be even more sure that it would be a major national scandal if a Republican candidate went out of his/her way to defend the bigot and insist that their bigotry is not bigotry, despite their having drawn on the nation's long and shameful history of tolerating such bigotry.

But then again, we should not be surprised. After all, the Democrats booed God at their last convention -- attacking and insulting the God-fearing is right up their alley. And given that anti-Catholicism was part of the stock-in-trade of the Democrat Party's paramilitary terrorist wing, the KKK, we should not be surprised that anti-Catholicism finds fertile soil in that party today.

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Tolerance, Democrat Style -- Part I

I think this one says all that needs to be said.

Corey Brooks, a South Side pastor featured in an ad endorsing Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner, says he’s moved his family from his home while police investigate an overnight burglary of his church, as well as threatening derogatory phone calls he received which claim he’ll be beaten for being Rauner’s “puppet.”

On Saturday, Brooks rushed to the New Beginnings Church of Chicago after a maintenance employee found the church’s back doors shattered and an estimated $8,000 stolen from a glass charity box, meant to build a community center across from the church.

Police say they were notified of the burglary at 6620 S. King Dr. about 8:30 a.m. on Saturday.

“The death threats seem to be related to Bruce Rauner,” Brooks said at the church Saturday. “They say his name as well as mine and most of the references were in response to me in support of him. So it’s really derogatory, real racial, a lot of homophobic words. It’s real life threatening.”

Brooks said he received the five phone calls on Friday. He recorded one of them, and provided it to police. In that call, which was played for the Sun-Times, a man’s voice is disguised via a high-pitched filter. He is heard calling Brooks a “token n—–.”

“We on you boy, we on you. And you ain’t got nobody that can stop us, nobody. Who you go [to] the deacons? They can’t stop us. We going to beat your fat a– in front of your mama congregation Sunday. Yeah we going to steal the sheep of the hypocrite. You’s a hypocrite we going to beat your fat a– in front of your own congregation. Who you got that…f— we going to beat their a– too. They can’t protect you. You sell out you Uncle Tom a– n—–. You token. You a puppet for Bruce Rauner you puppet n—– a–. P—- a– n—–,” the voice says on the recording.

Back in the day, Democrats used to threaten and lynch blacks who did not know their place and voted Republican. Today, Democrats threaten to lynch blacks who do not know their place and vote Republican. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

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If Voter ID Is A Poll Tax, Why Isn’t This?

Shouldn't Eric Holder and the Civil Rights Division of the Obama Department Of Just-Us be litigating this fee charged by one government agency that must be paid before another government agency will count someone’s vote?

BOULDER, Colo. - Wait! Before you mail your ballot, make sure it has the right postage.

Boulder County says voters planning to mail in their ballots this election might come up 1 cent short on postage.

Voter instructions for returning ballots say the cost of postage for a two-sheet ballot in the secrecy sleeve will cost 69 cents, including 49 cents for a stamp plus another 20 cents for an additional ounce.

However, in January the U.S. Postal Service raised the cost of an additional ounce to 21 cents, which means postage for a two-sheet ballot and secrecy sleeve would actually cost 70 cents.

According to the Boulder Daily Camera, voters can rest assured their ballots will be delivered with no problem after Boulder County Clerk and Recorder's Office spokeswoman Mircalla Wozniak said they're covered.

However, it's a good reminder that all voters need to check their ballots. In most cases in Colorado, one postage stamp will not cover the cost and your ballot must be at election headquarters by 7p.m. on November 4 or your votes will not be counted.

And since Colorado now does mail-in ballots for all, it would certainly appear that this is a REAL poll tax under the logic set forth by the Left in the Voter ID cases. But since this was a law passed by Democrats with the intent of boosting Democrat votes, it gets a pass.

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October 25, 2014

Lots Of Watcher's Council Results

Well, I've gotten a bit behind, so here come four weeks of Watcher's Council results!


Council Winners

Non-Council Winners


Council Winners

Non-Council Winners


Council Winners

Non-Council Winners


Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

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October 24, 2014

Another Dem, Another Race Card

But Senator Patrick Leahy does sort of reflect my POV on the notion of having another African-American president.

TAVIS SMILEY: Those who are pushing for these tough ID laws, there are those who cherish their right to vote, in part because, including the Supreme Court, I might add. Whose argument seems to be that in the era of the first African-American president, these voter ID laws, these laws in the Voting Rights Act specifically, are no longer necessary. We afterall, have an African-American president. How then does one make the argument that we still have to have these laws that carve out special privileges and special protections of African-Americans when they're done enough to elect a black president.

SEN. PAT LEAHY (D-Vermont): Well I was and am a strong supporter of Barack Obama, he's one of 44 presidents. 43 White, 1 African-American. We've got to do more about that. But I also know that it is not just the president, it is the legislatures, the governors, the members of Congress. Because there are those who never want to have another African-American president, and that would be another very, very bad thing for this country.

Leahy and Smiley are absolutely correct about my point of view – it is my profound hope and prayer that we never have another African-American president. Having lived under an African-American president for the last six years, I can tell you that I believe it has been destructive to this country to have an African-American president.

Which is not to say that I have an objection to electing a president who happens to be an African-American.

And for those of you who are confused, let me spell it out. Barack Obama was elected because of the color of his skin rather than the content of his character or his competence. As a result, he has been a disaster for this country. On the other hand, the election of a president who is of good character and high competence and who happens to be of African-American descent (or a Latino or an Asian-American or a woman) would be great thing in my book. The thing that matters is the essential qualifications of our president, not the accidents of race, ethnicity, or gender. Thus I’ll back Bobby Jindal, Tim Scott or Susana Martinez on the GOP ticket in 2016 without a second’s hesitation while rejecting a white guy like Donald Trump out of hand.

Which leads us back to the offensive comments of Pat Leahy and Tavis Smiley. So many of us opposed to Barack Obama are opposed to him because he is a narcissist hose policies are fundamentally wrong for America. He lacked the experience, knowledge, and temperament to do the job of President effectively. His election had much more to do with his skin color than anything else, and his supporters have used that fact to tar opponents as racist at every turn, creating division instead of unity. So no, I don’t want an African-American president – or a Hispanic President or a Woman President. I just want a president, and the demographic details don’t matter. Because unlike the Democrats, we in the GOP don’t judge someone by the “content of their color”.

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White Male Dem Gubernatorial Candidate Calls Asian-American Female GOP Governor A Whore

Gotta love the way in which "pro-woman" Democrats engage in a War on Women (especially minority women like Gov. Nikki Haley) when they fail to do and say what they are told to by the Left.

Democrat Vincent Sheheen of South Carolina referred to his Republican opponent, sitting governor Nikki Haley, as a "whore" in an apparent slip of the tongue during a recent campaign rally.

"We are going to escort whore out the door," said Sheheen at a Thursday night event in Florence.

Sorry -- we won't let that "slip of the tongue" excuse slide. It would be a scandal if a Republican called a Democrat candidate a whore in the same circumstances, so we must insist that Sheheen be held to the same standard.

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Great Words From Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah)

Senator Lee gets it exactly right in this speech at Hillsdale College..

Exposing the ugliness and emptiness of the progressive vision won’t be enough to advance our cause. We also need to tell our story – we need to demonstrate, in word and in deed, the virtues and the humanity of our vision.

We will fail if we continue to limit ourselves to opposing government dependency. We must also celebrate the dignity of our interdependence with each other, and embrace the responsibilities that are indivisible from our freedoms.

It will always be our duty to reject the intolerance, conformity, and coercion of hyperactive government. But we must do more. We must also bear witness to the true diversity – of thought and of character – that naturally flourish when individuals, families, and communities are free to live in accordance with their convictions and the dictates of their conscience.

We don’t need to give up our support for investing in physical and financial capital. But we must also insist that the most important investments we make as a nation will be in human and social capital.

There’s another part of the speech that speaks to me as well – a part that eviscerates the false dichotomy that “progressives” present as they demand that we submit to regressive policies and programs that make us less and less free.

The conservative vision of American society begins from a very simple observation: in the real world. . . we are not isolated individuals and we’re not wards of the state.

Indeed, our lives are lived – and made meaningful – in the space between these two extremities... as husbands and wives; parents and children; teachers and students; neighbors and neighborhoods; volunteers and congregations; bosses and employees; businesses and customers; clubs, teams, and associations.

We are, in a word, citizens... who deliberate, participate, self-govern, and consent to be governed by our fellow citizens.

It is in this vital space between the isolated individual and the impersonal – often oppressive – state where lives intersect, relationships are formed, knowledge is shared, opportunity is created, and happiness is pursued.

It is in this space where Americans have always come together, in the free-market economy and voluntary civil society, to meet each other’s needs, improve each other’s lives, and overcome common challenges.

You know – this sort of reminds me of what the president during my college years used to say. Will this generation be as turned on to conservative principles by Mike Lee and those like him as my generation was by Ronald Reagan? I hope so – after all, Mike Lee is the guy who earlier this year called upon Republicans to stop talking about Ronald Reagan and start acting like him instead. That’s a vision and a mission statement I can buy into.

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Just Remember – The Media Doesn’t Want You To Know About Republican Women

But the New York Post does do this interesting feature on one, contrasting her reception by the press with the reception received by a prominent (and floundering) female gubernatorial candidate.

This is a tale of two women politicians.

One is a Republican running in “blue” New York. Her name is Elise Stefanik, a Harvard alum who served in the Bush White House and now works for her family’s upstate plywood business.

If elected — and the latest poll has her 8 points up — the 30-year-old will make history as the youngest woman ever elected to Congress.

The other is Democrat Wendy Davis.

Davis too boasts a Harvard degree, from the law school. Back in June 2013, she was heralded as the voice of American women when she tried — and failed — to stop her fellow Texas legislators from passing a law restricting abortion after 20 weeks. Now she’s running for governor, where the latest poll has her down 13 points.

Guess who’s the national sensation?

Of course, Stefanik doesn’t have the “right” positions on the issues to get Davis-like media adulation. In other words, Stefanik has positions that are on the Right and are viewed as right by American voters after six years of Obamunist failure.

And she isn’t alone.

[T]he Stefanik story has been all but ignored outside of local and conservative media because she doesn’t fit the preferred profile: a socially liberal Democrat, preferably with a dovish foreign policy.

She’s far from alone here, given the large supply of accomplished Republican women running this year — mostly against men.

There’s Jodi Ernst, a colonel in the National Guard who served in Iraq and is up slightly in a very tight Senate race in Iowa.

Or Mia Love, a black Mormon running for Congress in Utah, who is up by 9 points.

Or Barbara Comstock, an attractive, unabashed conservative and working mom who leads in her highly watched Virginia race for an open House seat.

Or Marilinda Garcia, a young, Harvard-educated, conservative Latina who is slightly behind Democrat Ann Kuster in their New Hampshire House race.

In other words, the GOP is a party that is promoting women – real women – with realistic chances of victory based upon their common sense platforms. That certainly contrasts with the likes of Wendy Davis, whose campaign can be summed up with the slogan “Vote for Wendy – she may be a serial liar who is out of step with Texas, but at she does have pink running shoes and a vagina.”

And for the record, I’d be thrilled to vote for any one of these Republican women. Not because of their genitalia – because of they are highly qualified and correct on the issues.

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Maybe When They Figure Out That Even Black Democrats Don’t Care About Blacks, They’ll Quit Voting Democrat

Of course, that’s what happens to groups that give 90% support to one party year after year after year – they get marginalized and taken for granted by the party they support. After all, why work for votes you are guaranteed?

Black voters’ disappointment with President Barack Obama, who they so eagerly embraced for so many years, could be costly on Election Day to Democrats, who badly need a big African-American turnout to win Senate and gubernatorial races in key states.

Instead, many African-Americans see an unemployment rate well above the national average, continuing problems with crime in many neighborhoods, and a president more interested in trying to help other voting blocs that didn’t give him such unwavering support.

He talks about same-sex marriage in a nod to the gay and lesbian community. He discusses immigration and its benefits, an issue particularly important to the Latino community. He fights for equal pay, a vital issue to the women Democrats so avidly court.

The black community, which gave Obama support like no other group, too often doesn’t see the investment paying off.

Of course he is focused on those other groups. Gays could swing to more libertarian Republicans. Hispanics are not a lock for the Democrats – look at the Texas gubernatorial election to see that. Women can and do vote Republican. But blacks – they just walk in and vote Democrat no matter how badly the party of slavery, segregation, Jim Crow and the Klan have screwed them over the years. No wonder the Democrats – especially black Democrats like Obama and the Congressional Black Caucus – play them for fools year after year after year. Doing so doesn’t hurt their electoral bottom line.

Is black discontent with Obama and the Democrats going to impact results at the polls? Probably. But will they vote for Republicans or just stay home? If they do the latter, then it is unlikely that things will change in terms of how the Democrats deal with the black vote. On the other hand, if they do the former it may be that both parties will begin to treat them as a voter group that is in play and finally begin giving a serious focus on the needs of African-Americans.

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October 22, 2014

Are Hidalgo County Democrats Dumping Wendy Davis Because She’s A Loser – Or Are They Racist?

It is at least one of the two -- and probably both.


Hidalgo County, in Texas’s Rio Grande Valley, is staunch Democratic turf — but notice anyone missing from this Democratic party mailer just sent out to Precinct 4 voters?

All politics may be local, but the absence of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis is, well, conspicuous. Here is the party’s explanation, per the local Monitor:

“Because of the large number of candidates, both statewide and countywide, we were just unable to fit all candidates while still focusing on our local candidates,” county Democratic Chair Ric Godinez wrote in an email. “For example, to highlight Gaitan (who runs only in Precinct 4) we had to sacrifice space for one of the statewides. Because Battleground Texas was pushing Sen. Davis primarily with plenty of literature, we felt we could get more coverage and bang for our buck for the entire Democratic Ticket (you will notice even in this piece, as in all our pieces, we are encouraging voters to make a straight party vote) while focusing on our local candidates in that precinct.”

Now I want you to notice something about the candidates endorsed on that slate card. Every last one of them is Hispanic. The only statewide candidates shown are the two Latinas – Leticia Van de Putte and Gina Benavides. Apparently Hidalgo County Democrats believe that if you aren’t Hispanic, you aren’t worth campaigning for.

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It Is Time To Tar And Feather Some Public Officials

Starting with this one.

Couer d’Alene City Attorney confirms: conservative Christian ministers’ wedding chapel business must provide same-sex marriage ceremonies

The letter, signed by the City Attorney, is here. It notes that, while nonprofits are exempted from the ordinance, for-profit wedding chapels are not: “if they are providing services primarily or substantially for profit and they discriminate in providing those services based on sexual orientation then they would likely be in violation of the ordinance.”

What’s more, it is time for Christians – and all people of faith – to stand up and resist efforts to force them to operate their businesses in a way contrary to their religious beliefs, and to refuse to pay any fine assessed as a massive show of civil disobedience.

Simply put – they cannot jail us all.

David French offers a great analysis of the problem with this situation over at National Review Online’s “The Corner” blog.

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Chris Matthews Says “It’s Like Obama Has Ebola”

That’s his analogy for why Democrats are avoiding Obama.

Chris Matthews reacts to Democratic Senate candidates Michelle Nunn (D-GA) and Mark Begich (D-AK), an incumbent, dodging the question if they voted for Obama.

"That's the way people walk past guys who are trying to get a buck or a quarter from somebody," Matthews said describing the candidates ignoring the question from a tracker.

"It's like Obama has Ebola," Matthews said on Monday's broadcast of Hardball on MSNBC. "I wasn't near him! I didn't touch him!"

I don’t think that is a fair comparison. Obama is not being treated like he has Ebola.

No, he IS electoral Ebola.

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Could You Imagine If A White Republican Said This?

But since this is an “expert witness” hired by the civil rights division f the Obama/Holder Department of “Just Us”, it is OK for him to talk down the black population of the United States.

An expert witness hired by Eric Holder’s Department of Justice testified that North Carolina election law requirements have an adverse impact on black voters because they are less “sophisticated” than white voters and therefore have more difficulty figuring out how to register to vote. Christian Adams has the details.

The requirements that the DOJ’s witness found blacks less able than whites to comply with are (1) registering to vote before the day of the election and (2) voting in the precinct where one lives. Since one needn’t be at all “sophisticated” to comply with either requirement, the DOJ’s witness, who was paid with our tax dollars, must have little regard for African-Americans.
Asked whether terminating the ability to register to vote on the day that someone casts a ballot impacts blacks disproportionately, the DOJ’s witness, Charles Stewart, testified in court that it does. He reasoned that (1) people who register at the last minute “tend to be less sophisticated voters, tend to be less educated voters, tend to be voters who are less attuned to public affairs” and (2) “people who correspond to those factors tend to be African Americans.”

Got that – black people are less sophisticated, less educated, and less attuned to public affairs. Our nation’s first black attorney general, working for our first black president, tells us so. Could that explain why blacks are the only group of Americans who overwhelmingly back Obama?

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October 21, 2014

But I Thought Democrats Believe Donations From Billionaires Corrupt The System

Then again, doesn’t this just prove that Democrats are corrupt under their own definition of the term?

The Democratic Party’s top super PAC disclosed more than $9.2 million in September contributions on Monday, listing a who’s who of wealthy liberal donors, many associated with the secretive Democracy Alliance donor network.

New York City businessman Ian Cumming—who “was awarded the largest bonus for any CEO of a publicly traded company in New York” in 2012, according to Crain’s—and a company called HFNWA LLC donated $1 million each.

It is not entirely clear what that company does, but it appears to be affiliated with Franklin Haney, a Democratic mega-donor who was accused of campaign finance violations in the 1990s.

DreamWorks CEO and 3D advocate Jeffrey Katzenberg and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull director Steven Spielberg each gave $250,000 to the Super PAC last month.

Big-name Democratic donors also chipped in: billionaire financier George Soros and real estate mogul Herb Sandler, who pioneered an investment model dubbed the “the Typhoid Mary of the mortgage industry,” gave $500,000 each.

Senate Majority PAC is one of 180 groups supported by the Democracy Alliance, and DA partners came through in a big way last month.

Contributions from those partners included $500,000 from Amy Goldman Fowler, $100,000 from Wayne Jordan, $95,000 from David Bonderman, and $12,500 from Lisa Blue Baron.

The super PAC also reported a $750,000 contribution from venture capitalist John Doerr, who has financed the campaigns of numerous Democrats and sat on federal panels advising the disbursement of green energy subsidies, some of which supported companies in which his venture capital firm had invested.

Oh those dirty, dirty Dems!

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Vote Fraud In Cook County? I’m Shocked

What next? Reports that water is wet?

Admitting his confidence in Cook County ballot integrity is shaken, State Representative Candidate Jim Moynihan (R-56), was shocked today when he tried to cast a vote for himself and the voting machine cast it for his opponent instead.

“While early voting at the Schaumburg Public Library today, I tried to cast a vote for myself and instead it cast the vote for my opponent,” said Moynihan. “You could imagine my surprise as the same thing happened with a number of races when I tried to vote for a Republican and the machine registered a vote for a Democrat.”

While using a touch screen voting machine in Schaumburg, Moynihan voted for several races on the ballot, only to find that whenever he voted for a Republican candidate, the machine registered the vote for a Democrat in the same race. He notified the election judge at his polling place and demonstrated that it continued to cast a vote for the opposing candidate’s party. Moynihan was eventually allowed to vote for Republican candidates, including his own race. It is unknown if the machine in question (#008958) has been removed from service or is still in operation.

I’m sure that there will be no scrutiny from the state or federal governments. After all, they both believe that everybody has a right to vote Democrat, whether they want to or not.

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Holder Says His Biggest Failure Is Not Doing More To Violate Civil Rights Of Americans

Not how he phrased it, but it is what he said.

Attorney General Eric Holder said that his biggest failure during his time as head of the Justice Department was failing to pass expanded gun control laws and criticized former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta for his negative characterizations of the president during an interview aired on Monday’s broadcast of “The Lead” on CNN. “I think the inability to pass reasonable gun safety laws after the Newtown massacre is, for me, something that I take personally as a failure, and something that I think we as a society should take as a failure” he stated when asked what he considered his greatest failure.

Seems pretty clear that the guy in charge of protecting civil rights thinks that the failure to pass laws restricting and eliminating civil rights is his biggest failure. Maybe that explains why he doesn’t view his failure to turn over subpoenaed documents to Congress to be a failure, and why he doesn’t consider his failure to investigate and prosecute the crimes of IRS to be a shortcoming.

Wow – just wow.

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October 20, 2014

More Proof That Wendy Davis Has No Shame

I didn't believe that Wendy Davis could go lower than her attack on Greg Abbott's use of a wheelchair. However, Abortion Barbie has gone even lower. No wonder that Texans are rejecting her in record numbers when she makes attacks on Greg Abbott, his wife and marriage.

Of course, the reality is that Abbott did answer the question -- just not to the satisfaction of the liberal editors of the liberal rag who were bound and determine to endorse the liberal candidate even though she is woefully underqualified for the job and unethical to boot.

“Right now, if there was a ban on interracial marriage, that’s already been ruled unconstitutional,” he told the paper. “And all I can do is deal with the issues that are before me … The job of an attorney general is to represent and defend in court the laws of their client, which is the state Legislature, unless and until a court strikes it down.”

Such laws are unambiguously unconstitutional. As Abbott noted later on, he made a conscious choice to do no more than note that fact and move on because such laws were definitively ruled unconstitutional long ago -- in fact, around the time that Abbott started elementary school. It is an absurd "gotcha" hypothetical and he simply wouldn't play the game. Good for him. He wants to talk about real issues.

And let's not forget who Greg Abbott is married to. She will be the first Latina first lady in the history of Texas -- something that Abbott has highlighted in his campaign, including in this add featuring his mother-in-law, who stood as his godmother when he converted to Catholicism.

But Wendy Davis, down by 15 points in the polls, is desperate enough to insinuate that her opponent is a racist. Personally, I find that more despicable than actually making the charge. It demonstrates her lack of integrity.

I look forward to the state of Texas giving Wendy what she deserves on November 4.


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John Fund Agrees With Me On The Problem Of Early Voting

I wrote on the subject on Friday, and now commentator and author John Fund writes that he also thinks that early voting is not a positive thing.

Fund even raises the point I do about voters lacking all information when they vote.

Consider, for instance, that Ross Perot suffered his meltdown on 60 Minutes, in which he accused Republicans of disrupting his daughter’s wedding, only nine days before the 1992 Election Day. That same year, only four days before Election Day, Caspar Weinberger and other figures in the Iran-Contra scandal who were close to President George H. W. Bush were indicted. The John Huang campaign-fundraising scandal accelerated in the days just prior to the 1996 election; and, according to Bill Clinton, it cost his party control of the House that year. In the incredibly close 2000 election, Al Gore had a last-minute surge in support, fueled in part by negative reaction to George W. Bush’s 1976 DUI arrest, which hit the media five days before Election Day. Karl Rove says the incident cost his boss the popular vote and at least one state. Luckily for Bush, many voters had already voted, locking in their preference before the DUI story came to their attention. There was no way they could change their vote.

He also notes that early voting and other non-traditional voting systems (universal mail-in ballots, among others) serve as an incumbent protection program.

How is early voting changing our campaigns? They are increasing their costs and difficulty. Steve Schale, a Democratic strategist and adviser to gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist, says of early voting: “Clearly it changes the whole way we campaign. It used to be you would build a whole campaign around Election Day.” Richard Smolka, an American University academic who published a newsletter for election officials for 40 years until his death last year, mourned the fact that early voting had made campaigns more costly and more complicated. Smolka cogently identified one of the main reasons so many state legislatures have approved early voting: “It’s incumbency protection,” he said. “It takes more money and more organization to deal with a longer voting period. It exacerbates their advantages.”

Such concerns are echoed by Christian Adams, a former Justice Department official. “Incumbents and Washington insiders love early voting because they already have the money and staff to monitor the integrity of the voting process,” he told the Washington Times. “They know that challengers and local candidates can’t afford it.”

Want honest elections -- require that most voters turn out in person on election day.

In other words, fully informed elections with minimal fraud require that we go back to the tradition of making voting on something other than election day the exception rather than the rule.

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Obama Says No SCOTUS In His Future

I actually wrote about this recently and why Obama would not be likely to become the next William Howard Taft. Now the issue has been addressed by Obama himself.

As Marine One thundered overhead, about to land on the White House lawn and take Obama to a series of political fund-raisers, I asked him if, like William Howard Taft, he entertained thoughts of serving as a judge later in his career. “When I got out of law school, I chose not to clerk,” he said. “Partly because I was an older student, but partly because I don’t think I have the temperament to sit in a chamber and write opinions.” But he sounded tempted by the idea.

“I love the law, intellectually,” Obama went on. “I love nutting out these problems, wrestling with these arguments. I love teaching. I miss the classroom and engaging with students. But I think being a Justice is a little bit too monastic for me. Particularly after having spent six years and what will be eight years in this bubble, I think I need to get outside a little bit more.”

While I find Obama’s demurral to be fascinating, I still think the reasons I gave in my earlier post are a better explanation of why we won’t see Justice – or Chief Justice – Barack Hussein Obama.

First, Obama is a polarizing figure who will be unable to make it through the confirmation process unless there is a Democrat in the White House and Democrat-controlled Senate. Heck, I don’t know that even a Democrat-controlled Senate will be sufficient to get a confirmation done without invoking a harsh level of party discipline not seen since the days of Senate Majority Leader Lyndon Johnson and a willingness to invoke the nuclear option to clear away the filibuster.

Second, Obama’s record of public service is much more sparse than that of William Howard Taft. Taft had been a successful Cabinet member and territorial governor prior to his time in the White House as well as a respected federal judge. Obama, on the other hand, has a much less substantial resume and lacks the legal credentials – both in terms of teaching, academic scholarship and legal practice – that have come to be expected of a Supreme Court justice today. I don’t know that (absent his years in the Oval Office) he would be recognized as qualified for a seat on a Circuit Court or even a District Court.

Third, there is the small matter that Obama is no longer even licensed to practice law in any jurisdiction in the United States. Obama does not currently have an active law license, having changed his registration to inactive when he began his presidential run in 2007 and to retired after his election as president. While he might go back and pay a decade’s worth of registration fees after his time in office expires, I find that unlikely – and I doubt sincerely that an individual not eligible to practice law is going to be deemed qualified for the highest court in the land.

I think that is a much more realistic assessment than Obama’s own answer that he would not want to limit himself to the role of a mere Supreme Court Justice.

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When Obama Loses The Democrats

It shows that things are not looking good in the midterm elections.

And since people are walking out on Obama speeches, things look bad.

President Barack Obama made a rare appearance on the campaign trail on Sunday with a rally to support the Democratic candidate for governor in Maryland, but early departures of crowd members while he spoke underscored his continuing unpopularity.

With approval levels hovering around record lows, Obama has spent most of his campaign-related efforts this year raising money for struggling Democrats, who risk losing control of the U.S. Senate in the Nov. 4 midterm election.

* * *

A steady stream of people walked out of the auditorium while he spoke, however, and a heckler interrupted his remarks.

No wonder Democrat candidates are avoiding him like he's an Ebola patient.

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October 19, 2014

Remember When They Said Government Would Never Force Ministers To Perform Gay Weddings?

They lied -- because now we are seeing precisely that situation in Idaho.

Two Christian ministers who own an Idaho wedding chapel were told they had to either perform same-sex weddings or face jail time and up to $1,000 in daily fines, according to a lawsuit filed Friday in federal court.

Alliance Defending Freedom is representing Donald and Evelyn Knapp, two ordained ministers who own the Hitching Post Wedding Chapel in Coeur d’Alene.

“Right now they are at risk of being prosecuted,” attorney Jeremy Tedesco told me. “The threat of enforcement is more than just credible.”

The wedding chapel is registered as a “religious corporation” limited to performing “one-man-one-woman marriages as defined by the Holy Bible.”

However, the chapel is also a for-profit business and city officials said that means the owners must comply with the local nondiscrimination ordinance.

That ordinance, passed in 2013, prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and it applies to housing, employment and public accommodation.

City Attorney Warren Wilson told The Spokesman-Review in May that the Hitching Post Wedding Chapel likely would be required to follow the ordinance.

“I would think that the Hitching Post would probably be considered a place of public accommodation that would be subject to the ordinance,” he said.

The Alliance Defending Freedom is on the case -- and noting that this case underscores the threat that gay marriage and non-discrimination ordinances that include homosexuality are to religious freedom.

Consider this observation by noted First Amendment scholar Eugene Volokh.

Note that, if the law can be applied against the Knapps, public accommodation laws could also equally be applied to ministers who provide freelance officiating services in exchange for money. The particular Coeur d’Alene ordinance might not apply there, since it covers only “place[s],” and that might be limited to brick-and-mortar establishments; but similar ordinances in other places cover any “establishment,” and if a wedding photography service is an “establishment” then a minister who routinely takes officiating commissions would be covered as well.

That leads me to wonder as well if a church that allows non-members to marry in its building might also be subject to such laws. After all, during my wife's time as a pastor she officiated at the marriages of couples who were not members of the congregation but who wanted a church wedding. Would this be sufficient to make the church a "public accommodation" -- or to allow government to force her (or a future pastor) to perform gay weddings? [As an aside, the denomination in which she served today permits gay marriages, though ministers have discretion as to whether or not to perform them and congregations have the discretion to refuse to allow them to be performed in their church.]

But at its core, this raises two questions:

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A Friend And A Hero

Back in 2002, my wife and I got season tickets for the Houston Texans. Given her mobility issues, we were assigned seats in the southeast corner of the stadium, section 541. That changed our lives in ways we did not realize at the time.

You see, a couple of seats down was a fellow in a wheelchair -- not uncommon in the handicapped-accessible row, I know. David made a point of introducing himself and with his buoyant, enthusiastic personality he became a friend. Over the last dozen years, as Paula has dealt with various medical issues, surgeries, and decreased mobility, David was a great source of support. He suggested doctors, offered us questions we should ask her doctors, suggested equipment we might want to try to improve her quality of life, and invited us to events sponsored by a group he runs in Galveston, Turning Point Gulf Coast.

We got a surprise this morning when we opened up the newspaper and found David's face smiling back at us.


David Gaston has been around boats all his life.

"Anything that floats interests me," he says.

Today, the 55-year-old is the Adaptive Waterfront Coordinator for the Sea Scout Base Galveston, a state-of-the-art sailing complex that opened this month. At the end October, the base will host the U.S. Disabled Championships; a fitting project to work on for Gaston, who is paraplegic and uses a wheelchair.

Gaston was injured in a motorcycle accident just three weeks shy of his 21st birthday. Although some aspects of his life are now drastically different, his penchant for the sea has remained constant.

* * *

Right around his graduation from Texas State Technical College Waco in 1986, Gaston caught wind of a potential job opportunity with Paraplegics On Independent Nature Trips, called POINT, which has headquarters in Dallas. He had modified a custom three-wheel Harley Davidson and rode it nearly 100 miles to the interview. The following year, the group held the first-ever adaptive regatta.

"I met with the director of Moody Gardens, Sherry Kerwin, in 1989 about creating the Inaugural Adaptive Sports Festival," Gaston says. Shortly after, POINT changed its name to Turning Point to include anyone with a disability.

"I was the first one to create my own private chapter, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, called Turning Point Gulf Coast."

Last month, the organization celebrated the 25th anniversary of the festival.

As I've said -- David is a friend and a hero. I'm glad to see him get a little bit of the recognition he deserves.

And if you are looking for a place to send some of the dollars you give to charity, I'd like to encourage you to look at Turning Point Gulf Coast as an option -- they do good work.

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NAME: Greg
AGE: 50-ish
SEX: Male
OCCUPATION: Social Studies Teacher
LOCATION: Seabrook, TX
DISCLAIMER: All posts reflect my views alone, and not the view of my wife, my dogs, my employer, or anyone else. All comments reflect the view of the commenter, and permitting a comment to remain on this site in no way indicates my support for the ideas expressed in the comment.

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