Friday, February 28, 2020

Former Obama Adviser: Democratic Party Elites Decide the Nominee, Not Voters

Supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders were surprised to see establishment Democrats saying the quiet part out loud-that the nominating process isn't decided by voters, according to Anton Gunn, a former adviser to President Obama.

The former South Carolina state representative said on MSNBC that party elites decide who becomes the nominee, not the public.

"This is what people need to remember: The Democratic Party has a party. The party decides its nominee. The public doesn't really decide the nominee. The public gets to vote for president of the United States, but people who are active in the party, who participate in the party, they decide the nominee."

He continued: "Superdelegates are very influential in the party. Also, delegates are very influential. And just because you're a pledged delegate for Bernie Sanders or a pledged delegate for Joe Biden doesn't mean when you get to the convention floor that you'll stay a delegate for Biden or Sanders. It's a process."

"The Democratic Party has a party. The party decides its nominee. The public doesn't really decide the nominee." - Fmr. Obama Adviser Anton Gunn #RiggedElection pic.

Gunn said last year that he never believed Sanders should have been allowed in the primary to begin with since he's not a Democrat.

"He's never been a Democrat, till it became politically expedient for him to say, 'I'm a Democrat,'" Gunn told the Spectator.

14 Crucial Questions That Bernie Surrogate Ilhan Omar Won't Answer

Freshman Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., is perhaps best known for her antisemitic rhetoric, radically left-wing policy, and mounting allegations that she committed marriage and immigration fraud.

As I argue in my new book, "American Ingrate: Ilhan Omar and the Progressive-Islamist Takeover of the Democratic Party," the sensational aspects of Omar's story belie the fact that she is not only one of the most prominent symbols of the Democratic Party's ascendant far-left base, but a powerful player in her own right.

Omar's clout was demonstrated most recently when Democratic presidential front-runner Bernie Sanders tabbed her campaign co-chair in the all-important 2020 state of Minnesota.

Omar's symbolic and substantive significance is summarized simply in the reality that a vote for Sanders is a vote for Omar and their shared agenda of socialism at home and submission abroad. Yet she has faced almost zero media scrutiny.

I delivered a list of questions via email first to Omar's chief communications staffer in September 2019, then to her general press account in December 2019, and again in February 2020 following the release of "American Ingrate." Neither Omar nor her office ever responded.

00 attributable to a "Self-employed Candidate" named "Omar, Ilhan S." Per public documents, your full name is Ilhan Abdullahi Omar.

If Omar is who the Democratic front-runner entrusts with Minnesota in 2020, America deserves a response to these questions.

Now They're the Disastercrats

Anybody who's been paying attention at least suspects this thing was cooked up in a lab there, and probably a bioweapons lab at that - though when Tom Cotton connected those dots he was called "Fringe" and a "Conspiracy theorist" by the same people screaming that Trump is going to kill us all with inaction on COVID-19.

Sure, CDC is taking greater precautions in dealing with COVID-19 than it does with ordinary flu, but the recommendations it offers to people are very much the usual stuff.

In short, for regular folks this is something to be concerned about and take normal, reasonable precautions about, and it's a really lousy time to travel to China and now Japan, but nobody should be losing their minds about COVID-19.

Trump's response to COVID-19 is wholly inadequate, don't you know, though when his administration suspended travel from China that was racist.

Trump isn't spending enough extra money on COVID-19, even though the entire point of the CDC is that it's funded to continuously operate against potential epidemics like this one.

Not from COVID-19, and not from the economic effects it's likely going to have as the Chinese economy continues to shut down as its cramped, filthy cities become prisons for people afraid to go outside and unable to access the quality of health care Americans can get.

You wouldn't want to be sick with COVID-19, or anything else, in either place.

George Soros' Man in Philadelphia

Now the defense of Abu-Jamal's conviction is in the hands of District Attorney Larry Krasner, the self-styled "Public defender with power," who during his short time in office has established an appalling record of undercharging violent criminals and astonishing indifference to the interests of crime victims.

Krasner was elected district attorney with a $1 million-plus contribution from billionaire George Soros.

While this contribution dwarfed all fundraising by previous D.A. candidates, Soros appears to have gotten his progressive money's worth in Krasner.

Accordingly, in November 2019, attorneys representing Maureen Faulkner petitioned the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to disqualify Krasner's office from any further involvement in the Abu-Jamal case based on conflicts of interest.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court should consider Faulkner's petition in the overall context of the disaster that has befallen the people of Philadelphia with the election of Krasner.

Hopefully the court will remove Krasner from the Abu-Jamal case so that Pennsylvania's attorney general may take over and vigorously oppose the murderer's latest bid to get out of prison.

In the space of one week, two courts have taken extraordinary steps to rein in Larry Krasner, George Soros' man in Philadelphia.

The Real Cuba Is a Land of Extreme Deprivation

Cuba is famous for the 1950s cars still on the road, but few Cubans can afford them.

Based on my observations and conversations with our translators, there are three classes of people in Cuba.

Income inequality is so extreme that Cuba has two currencies, one for tourists and senior government officials-and one for everyone else.

Conditions in Cuba may be deteriorating further thanks to the collapse of Venezuela, itself a socialist basket case where people are starving and go without basic medicine.

Cuba used to receive oil and cash from Venezuela in exchange for what amounts to slave labor performed by Cuban physicians.

Cuba is not as totalitarian as it was in the early days after the revolution, when the government sent critics of the regime to labor camps.

Visitors from the U.S. will find that the people of Cuba are warm and friendly, despite their bleak circumstances.

House Judiciary Committee seeks docs for probe into DOJ interference in politically tinged cases

  1. Barr detailing a list of Justice Department actions he called “deeply troubling.” The list included the department overruling federal prosecutors’ recommended sentence for Trump confidante Roger Stone, opening investigations into officials involved in the Russia probe and intervening to relocate former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort out of Rikers Island jail in New York.
  2. The House Judiciary Committee on Friday demanded that the Justice Department turn over documents and make more than a dozen officials available for interviews as it starts an investigation into allegations of political interference in cases of personal interest to President Trump.
  3. Nadler has requested documents, a briefing on the cases and interviews with 15 current or former Justice Department officials involved in those matters, including the four prosecutors who resigned from the Stone case in protest of department intervention.

What Bernie Sanders Isn't Telling You About Canadian Health Care

All Americans, regardless of political party, want access to timely, high-quality health care.

Canada has chosen the latter route, and at one of the most recent debates among Democratic presidential candidates, Bernie Sanders once again touted its government-run health care system as a model for America.

Alas, Sanders' sanitized version of Canadian health care doesn't remotely fit the facts.

Keep in mind these are only the beginning of the financial hits from "Medicare for All." Canada's public system does not cover many large health costs, from pharmaceuticals to nursing homes to dental and vision.

As a result, public health spending in Canada accounts for only 70% of total health spending.

Far from being a model of government-run health care, Canada serves as a warning of the unintended consequences of socialized medicine: high taxes, long waits, staff shortages, and substandard drugs and equipment.

In Washington today, there are very sound proposals on the table to reduce U.S. health care costs.

The Feds' Bulk Collection of Our Data Records Has Been Expensive and Useless. But That Doesn't Mean It's Going to Stop.

The report analyzes the call records program implemented by the USA Freedom Act in 2015, which formalized but also restrained the National Security Agency's secret collection of Americans' communications metadata.

Prior to the USA Freedom Act, the NSA had used the PATRIOT Act to justify collecting this data with neither the knowledge nor the consent of Americans, or even of Congress.

This new report shows that the mass collection of Americans' phone records turned out not to be a particularly good tool for tracking down terrorism.

Its authors determined that the NSA wrote only 15 intelligence reports based on information from call records accessed through the law.

In January, a bipartisan pack of privacy-minded lawmakers introduced a bill that would formally end the bulk collection of Americans' records and introduce other reforms to the secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Amendment Court to provide some more transparency and better protect Americans from unwarranted surveillance.

Nadler and Schiff's bill would end the bulk data collection program but would extend the part of Section 215 of the Patriot Act that lets the FBI secretly collect business records it deems relevant to terrorism investigations.

So the feds will be able to easily collect your data when it's in the hands of a third party-and these days, that means most of your data.

Joe Biden Now Under Investigation in Ukraine Over Allegations About Pressuring Prosecutor

Democratic presidential candidate, former Vice President Joe Biden speaks during a Democratic presidential primary debate Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2020, in Las Vegas, hosted by NBC News and MSNBC. It's been a long time coming but it looks like Ukraine is finally investigating former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden over his pressuring Ukrainians officials to fire prosecutor Viktor Shokin in 2016.

Shokin has been pushing for an investigation for some time, alleging that he was fired because of pressure from Biden and because Shokin was trying to investigate Burisma, the company that Hunter Biden, Joe Biden's.

The issue exploded after a video of Joe Biden, at a Council on Foreign Relations event in 2018, came out in admitting that he pressured Ukraine over the prosecutor, including the "Quid pro quo" of threatening to hold back one billion in loan guarantees.

Biden has argued that many people including the EU and the IMF wanted the prosecutor fired alleging he was corrupt and his campaign has argued that Burisma was not under investigation at the time.

Shokin has said under oath in an affidavit that he was fired by Poroshenko and it was because of Biden.

There's a lot talk about Biden's son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great.

That's the thing that got Trump impeached, for daring to ask if the quid pro quo Joe Biden appeared to do was proper, not to "Investigate the Bidens" as has generally been cast.

62 Million Americans Voted for Trump, Only 6 Newspapers Endorsed Him

After having spent $344 million on a stable of local papers including the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Buffalo News, and the Omaha World-Herald, the Oracle of Omaha had to let them go for a mere $140 million.

In February, McClatchy, the country's second largest local newspaper chain, the owners of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the Miami Herald, the Kansas City Star, the News & Observer, the State and many other major local papers, filed for bankruptcy.

If the local paper is just going to consist of recycled talking points from the Washington Post or the New York Times, then who needs the "Local" paper? Local communities don't.

It's telling that "Local" newspapers wouldn't support a candidate that local communities voted for.

How representative are local papers when 62 million people voted for a presidential candidate who went on to win the election that only 6 papers endorsed? Who are those papers really representing?

The media keeps insisting that local newspapers are a vital civic institution.

America is not divided because local newspapers are dying.

The Role of Family Structure in Measuring Education Outcomes

In its 2010 report, "Family Structure and Children's Health in the United States," the National Center for Health Statistics declared, "In view of the changing family structure distribution, new categories of families such as unmarried families or unmarried stepfamilies need to be studied so that the health characteristics of children in non-­traditional families can be identified."

We also see that "In view of the changing family structure distribution," health-care leaders and analysts have begun to study causal and correlational links between family structure and a range of child outcomes.

More than half a century ago, the Coleman report, still widely considered the most important education study of the twentieth century, established the primacy of family structure and stability in children's educational outcomes.

What's strange about the silence on family structure is that the education-reform community and the charter school sector have already signaled that they understand the importance of family stability.

Understanding the role of family structure could lead more schools to teach middle school and high school students the success sequence-the series of life decisions that has led 97 percent of individuals who follow it to achieve economic success, and often to break an intergenerational cycle of poverty within their families.

In my own research into the role that family structure plays in educational outcomes, I discovered Chester Finn's simple analysis of the limited leverage of schools: "Formal education occupies a surprisingly slender portion of our children's lives. The youngster who faithfully attends class six hours a day, 180 days a year, from kindergarten through twelfth grade, will, at the age of eighteen, have spent just 9 percent of his hours on earth under the school roof. The other 91 percent is spent elsewhere." The quality of the "Elsewhere" environment is heavily determined by the structure and stability of that child's family.

If we truly want to improve outcomes for children, we must have the moral courage to measure student-achievement outcomes by family structure as routinely as we now do by race, class, and gender.