~ Featuring ~  
Trump, Putin, and Venezuela
Michael Swartz  
War Crime!: Placing a Note in the Western Wall
by Alan M. Dershowitz } ~ Last week, in Israel, I committed a flagrant violation of international law. This "war crime" consisted of placing a note asking for "peace, salaam, shalom" in the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest site... The reason the note requesting peace constituted "a flagrant violation of international law" and a "war crime" is that the United Nations Security Council, in a Resolution adopted in December 2016, declared that all areas captured by Israel during the 1967 War are illegally occupied territories. That includes the Western Wall, the Jewish Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem and the access roads on Mount Scopus to the Hebrew University and Hadassah Hospital. Former US President Barack scumbag/liar-nObama demanded that his permanent representative to the United Nations not veto this one-sided, wrong-headed, ahistorical, bigoted, and anti-peace Resolution. scumbag/liar-nObama changed American policy by allowing such a resolution to be enacted by the Security Council as revenge on Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who, quite correctly, opposed the very bad deal scumbag/liar-nObama made with Iran enabling it to develop nuclear weapons. Although scumbag/liar-nObama himself had once stood in front of the Western Wall and placed a note in it, he now apparently regards Judaism's holiest place as territory illegally occupied by Israel. He is dead wrong, but that does not change the Security Council Resolution. So now I, and doubtless many others, have not only willfully and deliberately committed a violation of international law, we are also guilty of a war crime, because building or using civilian structures on illegally occupied territory is a war crime; and Israel built, and I used, the promenade in front of the Western Wall after Israel recaptured it during a defensive war. Let me be clear: I intend to commit this crime during every visit to Israel. Call it an act of civil disobedience, or call it an act which simply recognizes the absurdity and illegality of the Security Council Resolution, despite its passage and lack of veto by the United States, which abstained...  
Democrats Flip the Health Care Script: 
If You Like Your Plan, You Can’t Keep It
by Marie Fishpaw } ~ The U.S. House is putting to a vote this week a bill that would threaten the health coverage of 1.5 million people... H.R. 987 would overturn a Trump administration regulatory-relief policy, while wastefully allocating new taxpayer money to programs proven to fail. The bill would block the Trump administration’s relief efforts that help consumers access “short-term, limited-duration” insurance. While these plans were unnecessarily restricted by the scumbag/liar-nObama administration, the Trump administration has eased regulations to make incremental progress toward expanded affordable health coverage choices. The House bill would reverse this progress, capping duration of the plans at 90 days, and stripping consumers of the right to renew their coverage. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) finds the bill would result in 1.5 million people going without the insurance coverage they choose, and estimates that one-third of those would remain uninsured. In addition, the CBO found that the bill would only negligibly affect premiums for Affordable Care Act-compliant insurance a 1 percent reduction in premiums. The bill would allocate an additional $100 million annually for outreach and educational activities in states. The premise: More people would enroll in exchange-based insurance if they were better informed. That theory is belied by the fact that enrollment has been falling in exchange-based plans since 2016, despite efforts by governments at all levels to boost sales. One state alone California spent $110 million last year in such efforts, only to see enrollment fall by 5 percent... Government should get out of insurance business.
Protecting Faith in a World Filled with 
Religious Persecution and Repression
by Doug Bandow } ~ The Easter bombings in Sri Lanka offered a reminder both dramatic and tragic that religious minorities suffer brutally around the world... What made that instance unusual is that members of a minority faith, Muslims, targeted members of another minority faith, Christians. The more usual persecutors in Sri Lanka are Buddhist nationalists, who routinely target both Christians and Muslims. But Sri Lanka is not considered to be one of the world’s worst examples of religious repression. In many nations government restriction combines with social hostility to make life extraordinarily difficult for those who believe differently. The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom has just released its latest report on religious liberty around the world. The Commission highlighted 33 countries or other entities for their uniquely harsh treatment of people of faith. Talking about “religious liberty” has an ivory tower quality to it. But whether members of minority faiths are free typically has a huge impact on their daily lives: discrimination, harassment, and persecution, often violent, are a constant for many people. USCIRF cited 16 nations as “countries of particular concern.” That means systematic, ongoing, egregious violations” of religious freedom. Five non-state actors were rated as “entities of particular concern.” Following slightly behind were 12 countries placed on the Commission’s Tier 2 list, meaning they met one or two of the three tests for CPC status.The 16 worst nations are Burma/Myanmar, Central African Republic, China, Eritrea, Iran, Nigeria, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam. The five terrible entities are Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (Syria), Houthis (Yemen), Islamic State (Syria and Iraq), al-Shabab (Somali), and Taliban (Afghanistan). The slightly less bad persecutors are Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Cuba, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Laos, Malaysia, and Turkey. There are two broad categories of persecutors. The most important are Islamic, mostly in Muslim majority states. The genesis of violence in 10 of 16 and five of five resulted from Islam. Seven of the 16 are communist or former communist the three Central Asian states are both Muslim and communist, though in this case the latter factor likely predominates. Burma is Buddhist/authoritarian. Eritrea is generic totalitarian, if such a thing can exist. Nine of the 12 Tier 2 are Muslim. Four are communist or former communist the two Central Asian nations are both but lean communist on persecution. India is majority Hindu. In only two of the 33 named are Christians also persecutors. Central African Republic is majority Christian and politics is entwined with the religious violence; there has been Christian retaliation against Muslim communities. Moscow appears to persecute in support of the Russian Orthodox Church. Otherwise Christians are long out of the persecution business, thankfully...
Liberals Were Very Wrong
About Tax Cuts. Again.
by David Harsanyi } ~ For those of you who survived the Great GOP Tax Cut Massacre, things are finally looking up. The unemployment rate fell to 3.6% last month, the lowest level since 1969... We’ve now experienced over a full year of unemployment at 4% or lower. The economy beat projections, adding another 263,000 jobs in April. Wages are rising. It was Larry Summers, scumbag/lar-Bill Clinton’s former treasury secretary and Barack scumbag/liar-nObama’s White House economic adviser, who warned that tax reform would lead to over 10,000 dead Americans every year in December of 2017. Summers, considered a reasonable moderate by today’s political standards, was just one of the many fearmongers. The same month, after cautioning that passage of tax cuts would portend “Armageddon,” then-House Minority Leader Nancy Pulosi explained that the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, a reform of corporate tax codes and a wide-ranging relief, was “the worst bill in the history of the United States Congress.” Worse than the Fugitive Slave Act? Worse than the Espionage Act? Worse than congressional approval of the internment of Japanese-Americans? That’s a really bad bill. The tenor of left-wing cable news and punditry was predictably panic-stricken. After asserting that the cuts wouldn’t help create a single job, Bruce Bartlett told MSNBC that tax relief was “really akin to rape.” Kurt Eichenwald tweeted that “America died tonight.” “I’m a Depression historian,” read the headline on a Washington Post op-ed. “The GOP tax bill is straight out of 1929,” proclaimed the same writer. And so on. None of this is even getting into the MSM’s straight news coverage, which persistently and falsely painted the bill as a tax cut for the wealthy. “One-Third of Middle Class Families Could End up Paying More Under the GOP Tax Plan,” noted Money magazine... They were so wrong and yet won't say they were wrong.   
worthless-Ilhan Omar in U.S. illegally?
 Serious lawsuit seeks answer
by  Former Justice Department prosecutor and Freedom Watch founder Larry Klayman, who previously petitioned the Department of Homeland Security and the House of Representatives to investigate... Rep. worthless-Ihlan Omar, D-Minn., to determine her eligibility for naturalization, now has gone to court.
The Muslim freshman lawmaker has drawn rebuke from her own party leaders for anti-Semitic tweets while in office. And before she was elected, she tweeted, “Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel.” Klayman in March petitioned DHS and the House for an investigation of worthless-Omar on several grounds. Now he’s filing a complaint with U.S. District Court in Washington seeking a court order that would require DHS to investigate. Klayman said in a statement that DHS did not take any action on his administrative complaint, which alleged immigration fraud and association with terrorist support groups. “Rep. worthless-Ilhan Omar and her House colleague worthloess-Rashida Tlaib who just yesterday announced that she gets a calming feeling from the Holocaust must be held accountable for their actions. Both are not only vehemently anti-Judeo-Christian, but represent a threat to the well-being of all Americans who believe in freedom of religion and the vision of our Founding Fathers. Both are not just a disgrace, but demonstrative of the rapid decline of our institutions,” Klayman said. He alleges worthless-Omar committed “marriage fraud,” which, according to the Immigration Marriage Fraud Amendments Act of 1986, is punishable by five years in prison for any person “who knowingly enters into a marriage for the purpose of evading any provision of the immigration laws.” At the time she was given permission to enter the U.S. from Somali, she already was in “the resort city of Mombasa, Kenya, famous for its magnificent beaches on the Indian Ocean, and a magnet for wealthy tourists from Europe and around the world,” he said. That means she was not living in a dangerous environment that would qualify her for entry into the U.S...
Trump, Putin, and Venezuela
Michael Swartz:  By and large, the American people don’t take foreign affairs too seriously. Aside from perhaps the Notre Dame Cathedral fire and the birth of the newest British royal, the proverbial American “man on the street” might have difficulty naming another recent news story of significance from overseas.

Yet less than 1,500 miles off our shores — half the distance of a cross-country flight — there’s an ongoing geopolitical conflict that provides the latest test of a nearly two-centuries-old American operating principle, the Monroe Doctrine. In layman’s terms, the foreign-policy approach of our fifth president told the rest of the world to lay off the nations of the Americas as they naturally fell under our sphere of influence.

In January, Venezuelan strongman Nicolas Maduro was again sworn in as president despite being selected last year in what Vice President Mike Pence called a “fake election with a fake outcome.” The highly irregular circumstances behind the 2018 election have led most Western nations to refuse to recognize Maduro as the country’s leader, contending that the presidency is vacant according to Venezuela’s constitution.

This scenario of a constitutionally mandated presidential vacancy means that leadership falls to the head of Venezuela’s National Assembly. That man is 35-year-old Juan Guaido, who was just chosen in December to lead the nation’s rightful legislative body. Rightful or not, however, the sole possessors of the nation’s guns form the basis of Maduro’s support. Aside from controlling most of the military, Maduro is also being propped up by three key nations still in his corner: Cuba, China, and Russia. In the latter case, therein lies the rub.

Our Thomas Gallatin touched on the issue last week, but the dictator who “was ready to leave this morning as we understand it,” according to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, was talked out of it: “The Russians indicated he should stay.”

Last Friday, President Donald Trump said he “had a very good talk with [Russian] President [Vladimir] Putin — probably over an hour.” As White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders breezily explained, “The president’s primary focus throughout the call was about helping the people of Venezuela, making clear that the United States stands with the people of Venezuela, and the importance of making sure those individuals are able to get the food and the water and the medical supplies needed.” But others had a different take on this chumminess, claiming it ran counter to American global interests — and to his own administration officials’ statements.

While there are times that President Trump confounds the so-called conventional wisdom by going against the grain, the long history of Russian involvement with Venezuela is troubling. A Wall Street Journal editorial provides a quick and handy guide to some recent developments, but Trump is apparently taking Putin at his word that he’s “not looking at all to get involved in Venezuela other than he’d like to see something positive happen for Venezuela.”

“I feel the same way,” Trump added. “We want to help on a humanitarian basis.”

But given the hypersensitivity of Democrats (and their media enablers) to all things Russian, the mere appearance of working together on anything with Putin creates a lot of bad optics, including the shrill prediction  about National Security Advisor John Bolton resigning his post in frustration and giving the Democrats another excuse to pursue impeachment for collusion.

The U.S. has little interest in a military intervention, so perhaps this is an instance of Trump trying to kill the Russians with kindness. It was, after all, another Republican who once told the world to “speak softly and carry a big stick.”  ~The Patriot Post  

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Joe Biden Talks To The Dead: – He Worked On Paris Climate Deal With Long-Dead Chinese Leader

Former Vice President Joe Biden mistakenly claimed on Monday that he worked on the Paris Climate Accord with former Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping — who died more than 20 years before its signing.

Zach Parkinson  

Joe Biden claimed tonight that he worked with Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping on the Paris Climate Accord.

Except the current Chinese President is Xi Jinping.

Deng Xiapoing left office in 1992 and has been dead for 23 years.

Biden made the gaffe while citing his accomplishments in President Barack Obama’s administration.

“One of the things I’m proudest of is getting passed, getting moved, getting in control of the Paris Climate Accord,” Biden said in a speech at the College of Charleston. “I’m the guy who came back after meeting with Deng Xiaoping and making the case that I believe China will join if we put pressure on them. We got almost 200 nations to join.”

Xiaoping served as the leader of China from 1978 until his retirement in 1992, and passed away in 1997. Xi Jinping, China’s current president, came to power 2013 and signed the country onto the 2016 agreement.

In June 2017, President Trump announced that the U.S. would withdraw from the agreement, stating that accord will “undermine the economy” and “puts [the United States] at a permanent disadvantage.”

In addition to the Xiaoping gaffe, Biden bizarrely declared in a campaign speech that he is a “candidate for the United States Senate” and that people could “vote for the other Biden” if they prefer one of his rivals.

“My name is Joe Biden. I’m a Democratic candidate for the United States Senate. Look me over, if you like what you see, help out. If not, vote for the other Biden,” the 77-year-old said at the First in the South Dinner.

Biden’s confusing comments come as Democrat primary candidates are scheduled to debate in Charleston Tuesday evening. The former vice president faces increasing pressure to give a standout performance as his “firewall” in the Palmetto State crumbles in the face of a surging Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT). The Vermont senator is fresh off a decisive victory in Nevada caucuses on Saturday. Earlier this month, he placed first the New Hampshire primary and won the popular vote in Iowa. In a survey released Monday, the Public Policy Polling outfit said Biden leads South Carolina with 36 percent of support and Sanders is in second at 21 percent.

Hannity: Bernie's beyond gross article

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