~ Featuring ~  
Questions Surround Epstein’s Untimely Death
Political Editors  
A Universal-Background-Check Law Would Not Violate the Second Amendment
By JOHN YOO } ~ The terrible shootings in Gilroy, El Paso, and Dayton in the past week have renewed cries for Washington, D.C., to do something... In our federal system, the most effective responses will have to come from state and local governments, which have the primary responsibility and the broadest tools for reducing violent crime. But the president and Congress can act in one area, the rules for buying guns.  President Trump this week seized on the idea of expanding background checks for firearm purchasers. Before a Wednesday visit to Dayton and El Paso, where weekend shootings left 31 dead, Trump said there “was great appetite for background checks.” A proposal from Senators Patrick J. Toomey (R., Pa.) and Joe Manchin (D., W.Va.) would expand the reviews to private transactions that were advertised publicly or took place at gun shows. Expanding background checks remains popular with the public, with about 90 percent, including eight in ten Republicans, in support. According to media reports, however, the National Rifle Association has criticized the idea. Some conservatives have questioned whether such rules are effective, noting that the shooters in all three cases would still have gotten hold of their high-powered weapons even if Toomey-Manchin were on the books. Neither side cited empirical studies that can answer the real question: Would expanded background checks deter future mass shooters — as well as ordinary murderers, who take far more lives, or foreign terrorists — from acquiring and using high-powered weapons? But what conservatives should not worry about is whether expanded background checks would intrude on the Second Amendment. Because identity politics is all the rage these days, I suppose I should make clear that I am no gun-control advocate, even though I am a law professor at the University of California at Berkeley. I may be one of the few unfortunates who live within the city limits of the People’s Republic of Berkeley who own guns — though that may be because I grew up in Pennsylvania, where some schools have a day off at the start of hunting season. There are probably few other members of the Faculty Club who also belong to the Richmond Calif. Rod and Gun Club — if there are, I haven’t seen them at the range. I am sure that writing this op-ed will spark a movement to petition the Berkeley City Council to have me expelled from the city — again. But unfortunately for most Berkeley residents, the Second Amendment declares: “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” In Heller v. District of Columbia (2008), the Supreme Court held that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to keep and bear firearms, rather than just a collective right to a well-armed militia. The “inherent right to self-defense,” the Court found, is “central to the Second Amendment right.” As a result, the District of Columbia could not ban handgun possession in the home...  
Steve Bannon Extensive 
Interview With Maria Bartiromo
by sundance
{} ~ Former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon appears on Fox News with Maria Bartiromo for a wide-ranging discussion on current political and geopolitical events... Topics include the U.S-Mexico border security and immigration; the 2020 democrat candidates announced and unannounced; the bigger geopolitical issues behind the U.S-China trade conflict; loose lips liar-Joe and Hunter Biden’s direct financial relationship to the Chinese communist government; the USMCA trade agreement; Trump’s leverage to increase an EU free economic alliance against China; and radical action by dems.
Social Security Administration to increase 
benefits in 2019 and issue warning to recipients
By Tori McNabb } ~ President shows no signs of slowing down in the new year, despite his sweeping success of accomplishing most of his campaign promises in the first half of his first term in office... While Democrat leaders are enjoying their break from government duties while Congress is shut down, Trump has been hard at work in the White House. The president wants to start the new year out right by bringing big changes after exposing a major scandal in this country. Social Security recipients will see an increase in their benefits for 2019. Benefits will rise almost three percent due to a cost-of-living adjustment announced back in the fall. That’s the biggest jump in seven years. For the average retired worker, it will mean about $39 more each month or $468 per year. The cost-of-living adjustment is based on a broad index of consumer prices calculated by the government. At the same time though, be on the lookout for scammers pretending to be from the Social Security Administration. The S.S.A said so far this year, more than 35,000 people reported the scam, compared to just over 3,000 last year. The scammers will often say your Social Security number is about to be suspended because of suspicious activity. Your Social Security number will never be suspended and you do not have to verify your number to anyone who calls. The Social Security Administration will never call to threaten your benefits or tell you to wire money or send cash.
UK: Going Easy on ISIS Terrorists, 
Hard on Those Who Fought Them?
by Judith Bergman } ~ The West has mercilessly let down persecuted minorities in the Middle East, while showing great concern for the well-being of returning ISIS terrorists, their children and their spouses... There seems to have been no such concern for the victims of ISIS terrorists, particularly the Christians and Yazidis. In the Netherlands, the Dutch immigration service has been sending Yazidi asylum seekers back to refugee camps in northern Iraq, and arguing that they have sufficient access to food and other facilities, Dutch media outlet Trouw recently reported. By contrast, in February, Dutch Minister of Justice Ferdinand Grapperhaus said that the Netherlands is "looking into" the option of trying to move Dutch women and children living in refugee camps in Syria to safe areas where they can return to the Netherlands. "What we are looking into is can we get them to safe areas, with the help of the people who have power over the camps," Grapperhaus said. "Then they can register at the Dutch consulate and we can get them to the Netherlands and the children to social services. That is my main motivation." As of May, the Netherlands was negotiating the safe passage of 10 women and their children, who have been staying in refugee camps in northeast Syria. The Netherlands, according to the Dutch news outlet AD, wants to ensure that these women and children can reach the nearest Dutch consulate in Erbil, Iraq without being arrested, tried and sentenced to death. Pari Ibrahim, the founder and executive director of the Free Yezidi Foundation (FYF), told the website Kurdistan 24 that she is very concerned about the Yezidis in Iraq. "We do not think European immigration authorities should be rejecting Yezidi asylum cases," she said. "Survivors of a genocide have special and unique needs that should be recognised." Some officials in the Netherlands, evidently, appear to think otherwise. In addition, some European countries are actually in the process of prosecuting nationals who travelled to Syria and Iraq to fight against ISIS. In the UK, it is estimated that just a few dozen British volunteers fought against ISIS. By comparison, approximately 850 UK nationals travelled from the UK to join ISIS...
Corporate Shakedown
by Patrick Hauf } ~ American businesses are adopting increasingly liberal policies and public stances due to pressure from progressive activists within corporate America... rather than social media outrage cycle, according to corporate watchdogs. The practice of marshaling a minority of stakeholders in a company to advance a political cause is often referred to as "shareholder activism," and the tactic has proven effective in the 21st century. Shareholders of publicly-traded corporations push for reforms aimed at achieving political, rather than business, ends. The results can be seen in major American companies publicly backing liberal positions on major culture war issues, from the "racism" of the American flag, to transgender bathrooms, and pro-life legislation. Stephen R. Soukup, vice president of the market research firm "The Political Forum," works to inform his audience of this corporate bias through his company's newsletter. He said he worries that not enough conservatives are aware of this leftwing bias within the shareholding world to even begin fighting back effectively.  "The initial goal should be to make shareholders and large institutional investment firms aware that this is going on," he told the Washington Free Beacon. "You have no idea how many people have reached out to me saying they had no idea." The next step, he says, is to get conservatives to create their version of this business strategy that will help restore their influence in the business sphere...
Questions Surround Epstein’s Untimely Death
Political Editors:  Jeffrey Epstein’s apparent suicide while in jail on Saturday has sparked a flurry of questions and conspiracy theories surrounding the high-profile sex-trafficking case against the multimillionaire financier and sex offender. What has fueled many of the questions and conspiracy theories were Epstein’s connections to famous and powerful individuals, the most notable being Bill Clinton. The suspicious circumstances surrounding Epstein’s death certainly have not helped matters.

Why, for example, was Epstein seemingly suddenly taken off suicide watch? As The Wall Street Journal reported, “Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse said in a letter to [Attorney General William] Barr: ‘Every single person in the Justice Department — from your Main Justice headquarters staff all the way to the night-shift jailer — knew that this man was a suicide risk, and that his dark secrets couldn’t be allowed to die with him.’” Who ordered the change, and why? Why was his cellmate transferred out shortly before Epstein’s death? And the biggest question of all: Who benefits now that Epstein will not be tried?

Clearly, Barr was not happy to learn of Epstein’s death, as he immediately ordered the inspector general to investigate the incident in addition to the FBI’s inquiry that is currently underway. Epstein’s accusers are also not happy, as they have now been robbed of their day in court to prove their claims against him.

It will be interesting going forward to see what the investigations turn up and if any others who were implicated are charged as party to Epstein’s sex-trafficking crimes.  ~The Patriot Post  

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Fact Check:   'Joe Biden Claims ‘We Didn’t Lock People Up In Cages’

CLAIM: Former Vice President Joe Biden claimed, on immigration: “We didn’t lock people up in cages.”

VERDICT: FALSE. The “cages” were built by the Obama-Biden administration.

Univision moderator Jorge Ramos asked Biden at the third Democrat debate at Texas Southern University in Houston, Texas, why Latinos should trust him after the Obama administration continued deporting “undocumented immigrants.”

Biden claimed that the Obama administration’s policies were more humane than those of President Donald Trump: “We didn’t lock people up in cages,” he said.

In fact, the “cages” were built by the Obama administration to deal with a surge of unaccompanied minors who crossed the border illegally in 2014.

Originally, the Obama administration was “warehousing” children — literally — in overwhelmed Border Patrol facilities. Breitbart News broke the story of the surge, which was partly triggered by Obama’s policy of allowing illegal alien children who entered the country as minors to stay in the country (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA).

Above image credit: AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, Pool, File

The above photo was published by the Associated Press in June 2014, and the photo below is of Obama’s Secretary of Homeland Security, Jeh Johnson, touring a Border Patrol facility with “cages.”

Above: Border Patrol officers escort Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson and Gov. Jan Brewer through the department’s Nogales processing facility for immigrant children. (Photo courtesy Barry Bahler/Department of Homeland Security)

The “cages” are chain-link enclosures in Border Patrol processing facilities that are meant to protect children from adults in custody. They are not permanent accommodations.

In mid-2018, as the Trump administration began enforcing a “zero tolerance” policy that stopped the “catch-and-release” policy of letting illegal aliens go after they were arrested. Detaining adults and children meant that children had to be processed separately; the enclosures prevented adults from harming children.

As Breitbart News reported at the time, children were not housed in “cages.” They were processed and then taken to shelters, where they were given medical care, toiletries, education, recreation, and counseling, and where staff attempted to find relatives or sponsors to whom they could be released.

Democrats began tweeting images of “kids in cages” to condemn the Trump administration. Journalists, too, shared those images.

One problem: they were taken during the Obama administration.

Public outrage at the images led President Trump to end the policy, and require families to be detained together.

Democrats keep repeating the mistake, however: in July, they had to delete a tweet that used an image from the Obama era and cited the “inhumane treatment” of children by the Trump administration.

Republicans argue that not detaining illegal aliens is actually the cruel policy, because it encourages migrants to undertake a dangerous journey, often guided by cartels and smugglers.

As Breitbart News’ Alana Mastrangelo noted recently:

But what’s worse than “cages,” however, are reports of migrant children also being handed over to human traffickers during the Obama administration — while Biden was vice president — according to the New York Times. Between October 2013 and July 2015 alone, nearly 80,000 unaccompanied children from Central American countries were detained by U.S. authorities.

It remains unclear how many of the tens of thousands of children were handed over to human traffickers — including sex traffickers — during that span of nearly two years, as those cases are reportedly not tracked.

“Others were ransomed by the very smugglers to whom their families paid thousands of dollars to sneak them into the United States,” reported the New York Times in 2015, during Obama’s presidency and Biden’s vice presidency. “Some lost limbs during the journey or found themselves sold into sexual slavery.”

Biden told voters in South Carolina last month that he would close all border detention facilities, guaranteeing that the migrant flow would continue.

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