~ 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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TRUMP:  Trump To Give ‘Start Your Engines’ Command At Dayton

President Donald Trump will give the command for drivers to start their engines before the Daytona 500.

Daytona International Speedway officials named Trump the grand marshal for NASCAR’s season opener, meaning he will deliver the most famous four words in auto racing. “Gentleman, start your engines,” has been a staple of races around the country and world for decades.

White House spokesman Judd Deere said Thursday the president plans to attend the race. Track president Chip Wile confirmed the news in a release.

“Daytona International Speedway has been privileged to have hosted several sitting presidents of the United States over our history,” Wile said. “We’re honored that the president of the United States has chosen to experience the pageantry and excitement of ‘The Great American Race.’”

Trump is the third sitting president to attend a race at Daytona, but only the second to attend the Daytona 500. George W. Bush attended in 2004. Trump is the first to be given an honorary role in pre-race ceremonies.

Trump is scheduled to spend part of the Presidents Day weekend at his private club in Palm Beach, Florida.

The Federal Aviation Administration issued a flight restriction for Sunday and the U.S. Secret Service, which is responsible for presidential security, also tweeted to fans that drones are prohibited within 30 miles of the race in Daytona Beach — a restriction put in place for presidential visits.

Trump has hosted previous NASCAR champions at the White House and last October awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom to motorsports titan Roger Penske. Last year, Trump also praised retired driver Mario Andretti, the Daytona 500 winner in 1967, reminiscing about a ride Andretti gave him in a race car for his reality show “The Apprentice.”

“I said, ‘Mario, get me out of here. I want to get out of this car,’” Trump recalled. “We went so fast. We literally — we covered four blocks in like a second.”

Tucker: Elizabeth Warren's campaign on its last legs

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