Eric Greitens Might Actually Fix St. Louis

By K.C. the Hairdresser who’s husband “Is not after anything, I am not a part of politics, I am not a part of anything, I just want to move on with my life.” – but don’t confuse me with anyone you’ve heard in the news.

Where to begin with this? So many different angles and information that has yet to come to light. Possessing the information by doing the research that nobody does is a very gratifying experience when you actually do it. 99% of people let the narrative and news create their reality, even their beliefs as a person and their behavior so long as it’s socially rewarded. Just ask europe 70 years ago how powerful the narrative can be to their behavior and morals. The extermination of a whole class of people because everyone knew they were the problem. Why would anyone raise question to something that everyone agrees is true? It must be true.

Okay so… Post Dispatch never gets a story right. The post dispatch is the worst paper in america as far as I’m concerned. Their sports reporting is decent, but they didn’t keep the rams. Kronke played the city and the media like fiddle on that deal which they’re still paying for (sans stadium)

Now… How in hell could Eric Greitens actually help liberals? Trick question… they can never be helped by a Republican. Their brain doesn’t detect the benefits that they gain and it only allow them to hate them. It’s more a personal issue than anything. They don’t really want to see anyone except their side succeed because everything is broken up into a pie with groups and sides all fighting to get the most of that pie. Teamwork doesn’t register with liberals when it comes agreeing with a republican. That’s like Dogma or Cardinal Sin or something. It’s been so long since I was liberal its hard to remember all the justifications I gave myself at the time. They all generally involved distrust and some form of hate that I overcame.

Well I’m open to the possibility that Eric might have taken the bullets in order to bring about change that was never going to be possible before given the stronghold democrats have on the city of st. louis. It’s comparable to chicago in the fact that people get murdered every single day and the crime only continues to rise and all the constituents are a lock for democrat votes because they’ve got the post dispatch to tell them how horribly bad anyone other than a democrat would be fore their life. In fact if you’re a republican, you can’t really be anything more than a threat and menace to society thinking only about yourself and totally corrupt. Just looking to gain power so that you can then use that power for yourself and never to help anyone else. This is easily believed by those who have very little and can’t understand having nice things. They simply can’t afford to be that naive given their circumstances. Survival is dependant on shrewd thinking and defending for yourself and you’re group. There’s very little opportunity for those who grow up in the city of st. louis. The fake news will tell you its silicon valley, but it’s closer to Fallujah 2004 than “silicon valley”.

I’m short staffed here so the research / information is still at early stage, but here’s how I see this playing out going forward.

  • A special prosecutor will be appointed to handle subsequent legal proceedings with Eric Greitens. A real one… One that gives Eric a fair chance for his story to be heard. The special prosecutor that was working this case before was a harvard law professor (going out on a limb but ties to Attorney Dierker ammater. Dierker was a judge in the city of st. louis before stepping down for this case to end out his career from what I gather) the harvard law professor listed a small legal practice from Orlando, FL as his firm. Just so happens to be the same firm that represented Casey Anthony and Aaron Hernandez. REAL WINNERS there -Meanwhile Josh Hawley the Attorney General for Missouri has said he can only help the DA office by handing over information and adding yet another voice to the witch hunt against Eric. He could only sit on the sidelines and urge the governor to step down. He decided to do that instead of ensure civil liberties were not being violated. Yes, the same Josh Hawley who is tied up in a campaign for senate of missouri against Claire McCaskill. He’s actually a very pathetic individual for what he’s doing (and not doing) for the state of missouri.
  • Grietens has the best attorneys in the world working for him and they just happen to be here in the city of St. Louis. Some of which are democrats and have donated to the party. This isn’t about politics with them. It’s about serving their client and giving eric the best defense which we are entitled to. Eric has done nothing Illegal and has been found guilty of nothing illegal. In America… that means you’re innocent regardless of what one person says about you. The legal proceedings are there to protect us against false positives where someone who is innocent is found guilty of crime they did not commit.
  • Greitens attorney’s are calling for the City of St. Louis Police Department to Investigate Gardner the DA who is running the politically motivated witch hunt while dropping murder charges due to lack of evidence or resources available which is doing nothing to deter the crime and homicide rate in the city. It’s actually going up more than than the year before. This is typically the biggest focus for the attorney’s office.
  • The Police Department must always rely on the prosecutors to present the case and lock up the criminals they bring in that have been arrested. In high crime areas such as the city of st. louis, it is very difficult to get a witness to agree to testify because they fear for their life. This leaves the city at an essential stalemate of catch and release with the police officers who’s loved ones worry about their safety every second they are at work. Quite frankly, it’s a very very hard, if not impossible job keeping safe residents when they are the same people who don’t want any interaction or involvement with the police because they view them as the problem.
  • The city of St. Louis Police Department now sits in a position where it may not need Gardner and they can investigate the courts and politicians to see what’s really going on behind the front lines where they’ve been forced to do a near impossible job because the narrative is so negative and the situation is so bad due to such horrible leadership within the government. I think if you are to peel back the curtains and take a look at the system that operates in Missouri, you’d find only corruption and ignorance from the elected representatives. They’ve certainly responded like their gravy train is being threatened by someone or something.
  • That someone or something could just as very well be Eric Greitens himself. As far as the evidence goes, the public has seen none and frankly, his private life before he entered office is of no real concern to myself and certainly deserves the same rights and protections as anyone else. We can’t keep blaming people like the government, the police and politicians for our problems or lack of success and then totally destroy the lives, careers and families of those that get elected while we sit on the sideline crying wolf over and over. Just as soon as you get one person to start crying, they’ll get beamed onto every screen and audio waves 24/7 everyone is ready to join up the with the lynch mob and attack people and communities in an effort to have someone actually do something about their situation which they themselves either won’t or can’t do. Who in their right minds would want to do that if they are successful, likeable people with families and people who count on them daily to be there for them? You know how many mothers and wives and pushing their son or husband to join the policy academy in the city of st. louis right now? I’d say none. No sane ones at least. Most people would say no thanks and hightail it away from anything like that. Most people don’t have the courage to say what they believe for fear of peer pressure telling them to fall in line with a more agreeable or universally accepted idea or narrative. Most people are cowards. Eric seems to be the least cowardly person in the state of missouri. He seems to someone who would rather prove himself than talk or try. That’s what effective people. It’s in their nature to only prove themselves and they generally have a big ego because it takes one to be tough enough mentally. A weak ego will provide for a weak leader.
  • Eric, the st. louis police department and our best problem solvers should now come together and get to the bottom of whatever it is that is causing all the crime and violence in the city. Red Lines should be drawn and those that do not want to be here or who cannot try to be contributing solution should be sent off jail. Conversely, this may present an opportunity for the police and local governments are not sending victimless crime offenders to jail simply because they didn’t have their life together to oblige with society or B.S. laws meant only to draw up revenue or trap otherwise harmless people into a violation. If this piece can get resolved then we have a fighting chance in St. Louis. Otherwise we’ll continue to get more and more publically funded events and venues that nobody feels safe using or conducting business. If we can get the crime removed we can then start provide nicer things to the area that will attract more investment, talent and resources to provide more those who have so little as it is.

As Trump Says “WHAT THE HELL DO YOU HAVE TO LOSE”?

If MAGA hats and trump rallies stir up so much hate in you that you must physically attack a person for wearing a MAGA hat… then you might be the problem. You might be on the Wrong Side. Maybe… just a little bit. Red MAGA hats are okay to hate against and now turns a black person into a maga hat wearing person so the the difference there is truly something that is amazing to me. The irony is so thick and rich almost like a slice of cheesecake if you’re able to eat it peacefully that is. MAGA hats piss people off so don’t you go around wearing that hat interrupting people’s safe spaces. That kind of stuff deserve deserve a beating. (((((BIGOT)))) That was trump’s first big accusation that he got. He’s a BIGOT. It’s quite funny really. How we’ve gotten this far with th liberal derangement. You’d have thought they’d grow up at some point.

Cheesecake Factory suspends workers in MAGA hat incident

The Cheesecake Factory says it has suspended workers involved in an incident in which a black customer reportedly was subjected to verbal abuse by restaurant staff over his “Make America Great Again” cap.

Now let’s get back to making Missouri and America Great Again. Fake News is consumer problem… not a publishing problem. The narrative is the disease and the disease is the narrative. Either you’re a part of the problem or a part of the solution. The true victims are everywhere and they don’t want a diagnosis or help even if they don’t deserve it, they still don’t want it.

Dedicating this blog post to Wildwood’s finest… Tony Messenger because he’s simply the messenger putting his hands up in innocence when his agenda shatters into a million pieces can’t wait for the next story so he doesn’t have to come to terms with how much of Nazi he really is.

Begon fake news… History has proven that lies, if they get big enough, can lead to atrocities. Who controls the narrative and what will the record show at the end of the day. That maybe there were victims of their bias reporting and agenda driven narrative blinding mobs of people into burning cities and destroying peoples lives only to sit back and find the next story to write about while perched at the desk in wildwood, MO.

Hypocrites and cowards are a dime a dozen… The effective citizens actually crazy enough to throw their hat in the mix and try to get elected to take on the corrupted and ineffective system of government that can’t even protect the lives of their citizens are becoming more and more extinct. Soon you’ll just get candidates that say all the right things and people literally love them regardless of their lives getting actually worse. Its the narrative or character that matters regardless of how incompetent or bad they are at leading! (spoiler alert…we’re past that stage) Now, a deeply flawed candidate but can be effective and bold enough to make a dent in this never changing always losing government,  carries more weight now-a-days and that’s due to our fake news consumption problem. Don’t shoot the messenger just realize he’s a crazy liberal who doesn’t know better and he needs to be shown how to be a part of the solution rather than the problem.

We must #FreeKekistan which is really just a glass half-full thing.

Shadilay! Onward with liberty for and justice for all.

I won’t be shy about my support for candidates because they need our support more than ever to help fix the liberals and cure us from this marxist brainwashing. Liberals who still have have half a brain… try talking reason to the radical left. We can have a country without laws or borders and expect it to work. It’ll turn into complete anarchy just what they want to have happen. They hate success and everything america stands for. That’s not okay. Liberty is responsibility in which rights are given and respected but it is predicated on responsibility. The less we take on, the less free we are.

Some people are incurable and choose to miserable and worthless and that’s fine but it doesn’t mean we have listen or agree. Maybe they need to realize they are being worthless and miserable. Maybe not telling them is actually hurting them. Maybe not facing the facts and reality is really the issue. If you don’t want to be brought to the table to listen, then nobody else will do it for you.

Imran Awan Alleged to Have Used His Position to Influence the Pakistani Government

According to a report by the Daily Caller, former Democratic IT aide, Imran Awan, used his position as a congressional IT aide to to pressure local police to drop fraud charges against his father for writing seven fraudulent checks during the course of multiple land purchases.

One of the victims, Mohammad Abid, claimed that the reason the authorities dropped the charges is because Ashraf Awan’s son, Imran “had easy access to the corridors of power”. Abid further alleged that Regional Police Officer (RPO), Ahmed Raza Tahir, was backing Imran and his father.

According to DAWN, sources stated that Imran was using his political influence to influence the police to charge those who had filed complaints against his father, even leading to the arrest of Asim Sheikh, the attorney representing the complainants.

It was further alleged that, “’power muscles’ in the federal capital as well as in the provincial capital had phoned the local police to lend all sorts of help to the US national and his father.”

According to a Democratic IT aide, Imran told him that he had persuaded former White House Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel, to intervene in the matter.

Imran was also said to have been sending money and gifts to government officials in Pakistan, and received protection from Pakistani police. The Daily Caller further reports that Imran was also sending IT equipment to Pakistan during the same period of time in which fraudulent purchase orders for that equipment were filed, and in which over $120,000 of congressional equipment was signed away by the chief of staff for Democratic Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-NY).

This is troubling, not only because it shows how Awan was able to influence high-ranking political figures in the U.S. to intervene in he and his family’s personal matters, but it further shows that Imran was able to use his position to influence high-ranking Pakistani government officials as well.

Because Imran and his brothers had access to some of the most important, classified information relating to our national security, and had attempted to wire $283,000 from the Congressional Federal Credit Union to a bank account in Pakistan, it begs the question: Were they selling our secrets to a foreign country known for harboring the likes of Osama bin Laden?

Roger Stone: Schiff and Speier Say that DNC Handed Over Their Server

 

Roger Stone, having just testified before a closed-door meeting before Congress regarding the DNC security breach on September 26, is claiming that Congressman Schiff and Speier told him at the hearing that the DNC did, in fact, give over its server to the FBI. This contradicts James Comey’s testimony, when he stated that the DNC never handed over the server for investigation.

Answering the questions of Infowars as he apparently was leaving the hearing, Stone said: “The FBI Director… testified before this committee that the DNC did not allow the FBI to examine their servers. Mr. Schiff intimated today that that was not the case and claimed that the DNC servers had been turned over to the FBI.”

In another interview, this time with the The Gateway Pundit, Stone was quoted as saying:

“The most interesting about the hearing was that, in my statement, I strongly asserted my suspicion that the Russians never hacked the DNC and, of course, one of the central arguments, to that effect, is that the DNC refused to turn over their computer servers to the FBI, instead having it inspected by CrowdStrike, a forensic IT firm controlled directly and paid by the DNC. When I said that, Congresswoman Speier from California corrected me and told me that the DNC servers had been turned over to the FBI, and then Congressman Schiff essentially confirmed that, after which, Trey Gowdy said, ‘wait a minute, James Comey came before this committee, secretary Johnson came before this committee, and testified under oath that the servers were not turned over to the FBI, so what are you talking about?’ Schiff tried to change the subject and said, ‘well, we’ve got a lot of information that we learned during the recess and maybe we should talk about this privately.’ Gowdy seemed furious and stormed out of the hearing, so somebody’s lying.”

The question is, did the DNC turn over its server during the summer recess?

Carl Icahn Wins Again on His Bet on Herbalife

Herbalife is a winning investment for Carl Icahn
Herbalife is a winning investment for Carl Icahn

Hedge fund investor Bill Ackman placed a billion dollar short bet on nutrition supplement maker Herbalife. Ackman just didn’t bet on the failure of Herbalife, he has been actively seeking to make it happen in order to profit from his short bet on their stock. Since then, investor Carl Icahn of Icahn Enterprises has placed his bet on the success of Herbalife, purchasing about $100 in shares of Herbalife stock, comprising a 23.1 percent stake in the company. Icahn is winning big on his bet on Herbalife.

There is a reason why Icahn is winning the battle over Herbalife with Ackman: he is investing his money in helping this company to succeed, which is a better investment strategy than that of Ackman, who is attempting to use the power of government to cause Herbalife to go into bankruptcy for the purposes of succeeding in his billion dollar short bet.

Carl Icahn founded his firm, Icahn Enterprises, to make investment and profit from successful and start up corporations. He has been a successful investor. Forbes estimates that Icahn’s net worth is about $16.3 billion, and also reports that Icahn has an important friend “Donald Trump in the White House” and “Icahn now has an insider’s role … advising the Trump Administration on issues involving regulatory overhaul, helping to select the heads of key regulatory agencies like the Securities & Exchange Commission and the Environmental Protection Agency.”

Ackman is fighting a losing battle over Herbalife, solely for the purpose of destroying the company to profit from his short bet. As reported by Forbes, Ackman is not quite as successful as Icahn and Ackman’s net worth is $1.4 billion. Forbes noted that the downfall of Ackman’s hedge fund as the collapse of Valeant Pharmaceuticals continued to take a toll on Bill Ackman’s Pershing Square hedge fund firm, which saw significant asset outflows and another down year in 2016. Ackman’s main fund, Pershing Square International, fell 10.2% in 2016, while his publicly traded Pershing Square Holdings saw NAV drop 13.5%.”

It is widely acknowledged that Ackman is about to fall out billionaire club status due to the substantial losses caused by his quixotic war on Herbalife, and making bad bets on other companies, such as his disastrous investment in Valeant Pharmaceuticals. Ackman is expected to take a giant hit when his short bet on Herbalife fails.

Ackman’s war on Herbalife has been centered largely around false allegations the company is a pyramid scheme built largely on multi-level marketing. He alleges that the company was artificially propped up by orders filled by distributors rather than sales of products to end users, have proven false. The company just recently reported that 90% of U.S. sales in May of 2017 were end use customers, not distributors. Herbalife had agreed to an 80% of sales to end use customers when they signed an agreement with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) last year.

Herbalife is winning against Ackman’s attack because it has proven to be legitimate company that sells nutritional supplement products that consumers demand. Betting on the success of a company like Herbalife is a key reason why Icahn is building great wealth while Ackman is falling from billionaire status to mere multi-millionaire standing. Carl Icahn is on the right side of this battle helping to make Herbalife a great company again.

Sen. Cotton Speaks Out Against H-2B Increase in Spending Bill

Thomas Bryant "Tom" Cotton

Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) delivered a speech on the Senate floor last week shortly before the chamber voted on the omnibus spending bill that more than doubled the number H-2B visas that can be issued for the remainder of the fiscal year. Sen. Cotton, who has introduced legislation that would cut permanent, legal immigration in half, said that Congress ignored the lessons of the 2016 election and is out of touch with the American people.

Here are excerpts from Sen. Cotton’s speech:

In a 1,700-page bill, they don’t hide the good things in the bill, they only hide the bad things. So look to page 735, section 543—where you will find an increase in H-2B visas of almost 79,000. A 120 percent increase over the normal annual cap of a so-called seasonal visa program for temporary workers that can take up to nine or ten months. It’s not necessary. It has nothing to do with funding the government, nothing. It hasn’t been vetted. It hasn’t gone through the normal legislative process, which would be the Judiciary Committee, where the chairman and the senior Democrat both have written that they oppose this measure.

 

I don’t even know how it got in there. I don’t know if it was the chairman, the ranking member. They may not know—1,700 pages, after all. It takes hours to even figure out what it means it’s so complicated in language. But this is what it does: it takes jobs away from American workers and abuses the immigrants that come into this country.

 

In the past 10 years, the Department of Labor has found 800 employers, 800, who have abused 23,000 guest workers. Everything from stealing their wages, demanding bribes for their visas, even sexual abuse—and those are only the ones that have been caught. And that’s because unlike American workers, these immigrant workers cannot leave their jobs. If they are fired they go back to their home country where they often have huge families who are depending on them for their remittances. Their employers know that and they take advantage of them. It is a new-fangled form of indentured servitude.

 

Some people in this institution complain about the way Arab countries treat guest workers from South Asia and Southeast Asia. The conditions in which some of these H-2B workers operate are hardly much better. They live in filth and squalor. They’re charged exorbitant fees for their housing and for their food. And their employers largely get away with it because they know that these immigrant workers will not complain. They will not go to the authorities. They will not report it to the Department of Labor, because if they do, they go back to their home country.

 

And those are just the immigrant workers. What about the American workers? There are a lot of reasons why unscrupulous American employers favor temporary guest workers. They don’t have to pay payroll taxes on them, for instance. They don’t have to pay unemployment taxes on them. But the real reason is, those workers have virtually no leverage to demand higher wages. As I said, they could be sent home because they are tied to a single employer.

 

Americans have more bargaining power. If they can get a better wage down the road then they will go down the road. If they can get better benefits then they can go to a new job. But those guest workers cannot. The employers who abuse the H-2B program go to the greatest lengths to avoid hiring an American worker. The program says you have to advertise for the job in advance. And they do, hundreds of miles away in obscure newspapers that have nothing to do with the employer’s local economy.

 

Many employers discourage Americans from applying in the first place. Remember, these are unskilled labor positions, unskilled. These are not high-tech jobs. These are unskilled guest workers. They subject American workers to the most extreme, unreasonable, extraneous tests before they hire them. Tests they do not submit those foreign guest workers to because they can pay them lower wages. And when they finally are forced to hire an American worker because they face penalties from the Department of Labor if they don’t, they try to make the conditions as bad as possible for them so they can fire them and then replace them with a foreigner.

 

A lot of the arguments for this kind of program boil down to this: No American worker will do that job. That is a lie. It is a lie. There is no job that Americans will not do. There is no industry in America where a majority of workers are not native-born American citizens or first-generation lawful immigrants. Not landscapers, not construction workers, not ski instructors, not lifeguards, not resort workers, not crab men, not a single one. If the wage is decent and the employer obeys the law, Americans will do the job. And if it’s not, they should pay higher wages. To say anything else is an insult to the work ethic of the American people who make this country run.

 

We just had an election in which the president distinguished himself more on immigration than any single issue. You all realize that, right? You all realize that uncontrolled mass migration is upending the politics and societies all across Europe. You all realize that, right? What is it going to take for the people in Washington, D.C. to realize just how out of touch they are when it comes to protecting the jobs and the wages of American workers?

 

Mr. President, I will vote no. And I will say that today is not the day when Washington realizes just how out of touch they are.

 

 

Original Article by NumbersUSA

Why I’m Not Freaking Out About the Budget

Budget

Congress is about to pass a budget. I call it a “Paul Ryan Special.” This budget lets the government spend money for four months. It expires in September.

The budget is horrible. Republicans are spinning a few “wins” in the budget, but that’s a terrible argument. It’s like telling a terminal cancer patient, “but your blood pressure’s pretty good.”

Here’s the thing: you cannot control Congress. You can only control what you focus on and what you do next. That’s it. That’s all anyone can control.

Sure, you can influence people. If you capture their attention, bypass their critical thinking, and trigger their subconscious mind. That’s how you influence. But you cannot control. What they do next is up to them. What you do next is up to you.

I’ve learned that making fun of Paul Ryan on Twitter does no good. He’s not reading my tweets.

I’m, instead, focusing on improving my work. If I improve my work, the economy might grow. If the economy grows, people will give Trump credit. If Trump gets credit for the economy, he’ll get more positive attention by September. If Trump has positive attention in Congress, he’ll have more influence over Paul Ryan and Democrats.

People want a vibrant economy. People want to choose between several good job offers. No one wants to feel trapped in a low-paying job they don’t like. People want options. You want options.

I can’t fix the economy myself, but I can do my job better. And that will make my company and its clients better. If enough other people do the same, the economy will grow.

The other thing people want is safety. People want to be safe. What good is a great job if you get shot walking into work?

If President Trump makes America safe again, he will earn more positive attention. With more positive attention, his influence in Congress will increase.

I can’t do much about safety, but my kids can. I have two sons in the Navy and one who will soon be a firefighter. They keep us safe. I can choose to support them and their careers. That’s how I can make America safer. It’s not much, but it’s in my control.

You, like me, hate this 4-month budget. But I’m not freaking out. It’ll be over in four months. That’s about the same amount of time that Trump’s been in office. See how time flies?

It will be okay.

National Academy of Sciences Report Indicates Amnesty for Unlawful Immigrants Would Cost Trillions of Dollars

No_AmnestyBy Robert Rector and Jamie Bryan Hall | Heritage Foundation

  1. Based on a recent study by the National Academy of Sciences, it is possible to project the fiscal costs of granting amnesty or earned citizenship to illegal immigrants.
  2. Granting amnesty would allow today’s illegal immigrants to gain access to an array of benefit programs (Social Security, Medicare, Obamacare, and over 90 federal means-tested welfare programs), the value of which would exceed any taxes or fines they would pay.
  3. The net fiscal cost to taxpayers (in terms of net present value) would be roughly $1.29 trillion, which factors out to $15,300 per U.S. household currently paying federal income tax.
  4. The fiscal impact varies according to education level: Lower levels of education track with greater use of benefits and hence a greater cost to the tax-payer.
  5. A second amnesty (the first having taken place in 1986) could also signal a precedent that would encourage new waves of illegal immigration encouraged by the prospect of serial amnesties.

READ FULL REPORT

 

Sheldon Adelson’s Monday Buys Another Chance for Internet Gambling Ban?

Sheldon Adelson gets Sen. Tom Cotton to bring back his Internet Gambling Ban legislation
Sheldon Adelson gets Sen. Tom Cotton to bring back his Internet Gambling Ban legislation

The voters sent a clear message on Election Day to reform government and drain the swamp, but some in Washington D.C. didn’t get the message. While few were watching, on September 21, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR), an ally of Las Vegas Casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, filed a bill in the senate that is almost identical to the Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA) that would federally ban internet-based gambling in all states. The bill, S.3376, just like RAWA would prohibit state-based gambling online.

Against strong opposition from many Republicans and Democrats in Congress, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) pushed for passage of RAWA. The bill failed to see consideration before the House Judiciary Committee because it’s Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) is a strong supporter of the Tenth Amendment and clearly sees that a federal ban on state-based internet gambling is in violation.

Chaffetz instead held a high profile hearing before the House Oversight Committee he chairs titled “A Casino in Every Smartphone – Law Enforcement Implications” designed to build support in Congress for RAWA. By the end of the hearing, Republicans and Democrats testifying against RAWA strongly made the case for state-based regulated gambling while almost entirely refuting the arguments of those in favor of RAWA. The hearing was a complete failure for Chaffetz.

After the hearing, few members of Congress had any ambition to push for passage of the federal internet gambling ban. Chaffetz, as well as Sens. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who have all received campaign donations from Adelson, were sponsors of RAWA in this year’s session of Congress.

In the Chaffetz hearing, Reps. Mick Mulvaney (R-SC) and Thomas Massive (R-KY) both highlighted the strong Tenth Amendment arguments against RAWA, showing how clearly the bill is a violation of Constitutional liberty. Additionally, Rep. Massive illustrated how the same federal authority that could be abused to ban internet gambling could also threaten Second Amendment rights by prohibiting the sales of firearms and ammunition by online vendors.

Supporters of RAWA contended that the nature of online gambling made it impossible to prevent residents from states that prohibit online gambling from engaging in it via online casino hosted in the states where it is legal. These claims were strong refuted by Information Technology experts involved with implementing online gambling in New Jersey and Nevada testified about the use of technology that allows online casino operators to block citizens from states that prohibit online gambling from participating on their online casinos.

The defeat of the arguments over RAWA doesn’t stop Adelson from seeking another chance to ban internet-based gambling. The timing of the Cotton legislation on Sept. 21 of this year is quite telling. It comes just one day after Adelson announced his donation of $20 million to the Senate Leadership Fund, a Super PAC supporting the election of Republicans to the U.S. Senate. Adelson expects the legislative favor of RAWA type legislation for his investment and Sen. Cotton stepped up to do his bidding one day later. Adelson isn’t morally opposed to gambling himself, as an owner of brick-and-mortar casinos, he simply wants to government authority to shut down potential competition in the industry.

Adeslon and his allies in Congress aren’t giving up. Reportedly, the RAWA-like language is going to be slipped into a year-end spending bill in Congress in the coming weeks. The American people just elected Donald Trump the next president on a pledge to drain the swamp and clean up this kind of cronyism and corruption in Washington D.C. Congress needs to say no to Adelson and make sure no variation of RAWA is ever enacted.

Eye Doctor Trade Group Seeks Limit to Consumer Choices

Eye doctors trade group seeks limit to consumer choices
Eye doctors trade group seeks limit to consumer choices

Any time you have to purchase a product and you can only get it from a particular seller, you can expect to pay a high price for it. This was traditionally the way consumers purchased contact lenses. After an eye examination, and prescription for contact lenses, a consumer would have to get them from the eye doctor’s office at whatever price they want to charge for them. Then the independent vendors came on the scene, who bought contact lenses at wholesale prices to pass the savings along to consumers. This allowed patients to get their contact lenses without buying them for high prices at the eye doctor’s office. But the eye doctors and their trade group don’t like this.

The trade association representing the Optometrists is the American Optometry Association (AOA). The AOA, which represents the Optometrists’ interests in selling more contact lenses, has put out the message that contact lenses purchased from the vendors are less safe than those purchased at the eye doctor’s office. The AOA and contact lens makers such as Alcon, Bausch & Lomb, CooperVision, and Johnson & Johnson have created a front group for this campaign to limit consumer choices on the false safety claim, called The Coalition for Patient Vision Care Safety. The notion that purchasing contact lenses from eye care practitioners rather than elsewhere is more safe has been debunked.

One of the prominent supporters of the AOA position on these issues, a large manufacturer of contact lenses, Johnson & Johnson that has about a 40 percent market share in the industry, spent about $6.4 million last year to lobby for regulations on contact lens sales on the debunked claim that contact lenses sold by online vendors are somehow less safe than those sold at higher prices by Optometrists.

The Coalition for Patient Care Safety is pushing for Congress to enact the “Contact Lens Consumer Health Protection Act“ (S. 2777), a bill that would impose a complex set of regulations on all the contact lens vendors other than eye doctors offices. This legislation would impose draconian regulations, including restrictions related to verifying prescriptions and communicating with eye doctors offices, that would raise vendors’ cost of doing business and undercut their ability to pass savings along to customers. With these regulations in place, consumers would have fewer choices and would be more likely to find they might have to purchases contact lenses from eye care practitioners.

The argument for consumer safety is a bogus claim to get politicians to pass the legislation to restrict consumer choices in contact lens purchases. A 1997 investigation by 17 state attorneys general found this claim to be false. Contact lenses purchases from eye care providers were no more safe than those purchased from the independent vendors. The restriction sought will not improve safety; they will only limit consumer choices.

In 1996, 32 state attorneys general sued the AOA and the three largest manufacturers of contact lenses for allegedly not providing consumers with their prescriptions, blocking them from being able to purchase from other contact lens vendors. They lawsuits alleged the AOA and the manufacturers engaged in anti-competitive actions to make it tougher for vendors to sell contact lenses at wholesale prices.

It is clear the goal of the AOA, and those who support it on this issue, are simply working to limit consumer choices in purchasing contact lenses to force them to be buy from the eye doctor’s office instead. This will benefit eye care practitioners at the expense of their patients, who will then have few choices and pay more for contact lenses again. Competition among providers, giving the buyers more choices, always lowers prices and improves the quality of customer service.

10 Things That Every American Should Know About Donald Trump’s Plan To Save The U.S. Economy

Michael Snyder

Can Donald Trump turn the U.S. economy around?  This week Trump unveiled details of his new economic plan, and the mainstream mediais having a field day criticizing it.  But the truth is that we simply cannot afford to stay on the same path that Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and the Democrats have us on right now.  Millions of jobs arebeing shipped out of the country, the middle class is dying, poverty is exploding, millions of children in America don’t have enough food, and our reckless spending has created the biggest debt bubble in the history of the planet.  Something must be done or else we will continue to steamroll toward economic oblivion.  So is Donald Trump the man for the hour?

If you would like to read his full economic plan, you can find it on his official campaign website.  His plan starts off by pointing out that this has been the weakest “economic recovery” since the Great Depression…

Last week’s GDP report showed that the economy grew a mere 1.2% in the second quarter and 1.2% over the last year. It’s the weakest recovery since the Great Depression – the predictable consequence of massive taxation, regulation, one-side trade deals and onerous energy restrictions.

And Trump is exactly right about how weak this economic recovery has been.

So how would he fix things?

The following are 10 things that every American should know about Donald Trump’s plan to save the U.S. economy…

#1 Donald Trump would lower taxes on the middle class

The tax savings under Trump’s plan would actually be quite substantial for middle class families.  The following numbers come from a recent Charisma article

• A married couple earning $50,000 per year with two children and $8,000 in child care expenses will save 35% from their current tax bill.

• A married couple earning $75,000 per year with two children and $10,000 in child care expenses will receive a 30% reduction in their tax bill.

• Married couple earning $5 million per year with two children and $12,000 in child care expenses will get only a 3% reduction in their tax bill.

#2 Donald Trump would lower taxes on businesses

Under his plan, no business in America would be taxed more than 15 percent.  Alternatively, Hillary Clinton’s plan would tax some small businesses at a rate of close to 50 percent.  So Trump’s plan would undoubtedly be good for businesses, and it would encourage many that have left the country to return.

But where would the lost tax revenue be made up?

#3 Childcare expenses would be exempt from taxation

For working families with children this would be a great blessing.  Without a doubt this is an effort to win over more working women, and this is a demographic that Trump has been struggling with.

It is definitely an idea that I support, but once again where will the money come from to pay for this?

#4 U.S. manufacturers will be allowed to immediately fully expense new plants and equipment

This would undoubtedly lead to a boom in capital investment, but it would also reduce tax revenue.  As an emergency measure this would be very good for encouraging manufacturers to stay in America, but it would also likely increase the budget deficit.

#5 A temporary freeze on new regulations

Red tape is one of my big pet peeves, and so I greatly applaud Trump for this proposal.  I think that Bob Eschliman put it very well when he wrote the following about Trump’s planned freeze on new regulations…

In 2015 alone, federal agencies issued over 3,300 final rules and regulations, up from 2,400 the prior year. Studies show that small manufacturers face more than three times the burden of the average U.S. business, and the hidden tax from ineffective regulations amounts to “nearly $15,000 per U.S. household” annually. Excessive regulation is costing our country as much as $2 trillion dollars per year, and Trump will end it.

#6 All existing regulations would be reviewed and unnecessary regulations would be eliminated

In particular, Trump’s plan would focus on getting rid of regulations that inhibit hiring.  The following are some of the specific areas that he identifies on his official campaign website

  • The Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan, which forces investment in renewable energy at the expense of coal and natural gas, raising electricity rates;
  • The EPA’s Waters of the United States rule, which gives the EPA the ability to regulate the smallest streams on private land, limiting land use; and
  • The Department of Interior’s moratorium on coal mining permits, which put tens of thousands of coal miners out of work.

#7 Donald Trump would fundamentally alter our trade relationships with the rest of the globe

Donald Trump is the first major party nominee in decades to recognize that our trade deficit is absolutely killing our economy.  I write about this all the time, and it is a hot button issue for me.  So I definitely applaud Trump for proposing the following

  • Appoint trade negotiators whose goal will be to win for America: narrowing our trade deficit, increasing domestic production, and getting a fair deal for our workers.
  • Renegotiate NAFTA.
  • Withdraw from the TPP.
  • Bring trade relief cases to the world trade organization.
  • Label China a currency manipulator.
  • Apply tariffs and duties to countries that cheat.
  • Direct the Commerce Department to use all legal tools to respond to trade violations.

#8 Donald Trump’s plan would be a tremendous boost for the U.S. energy industry

Barack Obama promised to kill the coal industry, and that is one of the few promises that he has actually kept.  Obama also killed the Keystone Pipeline, and right now the energy industry as a whole is enduring their worst stretch since the last recession.  To turn things around, Trump would do the following

  • Rescind all the job-destroying Obama executive actions including the Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule.
  • Save the coal industry and other industries threatened by Hillary Clinton’s extremist agenda.
  • Ask Trans Canada to renew its permit application for the Keystone Pipeline.
  • Make land in the Outer Continental Shelf available to produce oil and natural gas.
  • Cancel the Paris Climate Agreement (limit global warming to 2 degrees Celsius) and stop all payments of U.S. tax dollars to U.N. global warming programs.

#9 Trump would repeal Obamacare

Trump claims that Obamacare would cost our economy two million jobs over the next ten years.  And without a doubt, it has already cost the U.S. economy a lot of jobs.

Not only that, but Obamacare has also sent health insurance premiums soaring, and this is putting a tremendous amount of financial pressure on many families.

Trump says that he would “replace” Obamacare, but that is a rather vague statement.

What exactly would he replace it with?

#10 Trump’s plan says nothing about the Federal Reserve

This is a great concern, because the Federal Reserve has far more power over the economy than anyone else does.  It is at the very heart of our debt-based system, and unless something is done about the Fed our debt bubble will continue to get even larger.

Since the Federal Reserve was created in 1913, the value of the U.S. dollar has fallen by more than 96 percent and our national debt has gotten more than 5000 times larger.  For Trump to not even mention the Federal Reserve in his economic plan is a tremendous oversight.

We are in the midst of a long-term economic decline, and things have not gotten better during the Obama years.  If you can believe it, a study that was just released by Harvard even acknowledges this

America’s economic performance peaked in the late 1990s, and erosion in crucial economic indicators such as the rate of economic growth, productivity growth, job growth, and investment began well before the Great Recession.

Workforce participation, the proportion of Americans in the productive workforce, peaked in 1997. With fewer working-age men and women in the workforce,per-capita income for the U.S. is reduced.

Median real household income has declined since 1999, with incomes stagnating across virtually all income levels. Despite a welcome jump in 2015, median household income remains below the peak attained in 1999, 17 years ago. Moreover, stagnating income and limited job prospects have disproportionately affected lower-income and lower-skilled Americans, leading inequality to rise.

That same study found that the percentage of Americans participating in the labor force peaked back in 1997 and has been steadily declining since that time…

Declining-Labor-Force-Participation-Rate-Harvard

If we continue to do the same things, we will continue to get the same results.

Donald Trump is promising change, and many of his proposals sound good, but there are also some areas to be concerned about.

Ultimately, just tinkering with the tax code and reducing regulations is not going to be enough to turn the U.S. economy around.  We need a fundamental overhaul of our economic and financial systems, and Trump’s plan stops well short of that.  But without a doubt what he is proposing is vastly superior to Hillary Clinton’s plan, and so he should definitely be applauded for at least moving in the right direction.

SOURCE: ECONOMICS COLLAPSE BLOG

Contact Lens Prescribers Push Legislation to Limit Consumer Choices

Legislation pending in Congress will restrict consumer choice in contact lens purchases
Legislation pending in Congress will restrict consumer choice in contact lens purchases

While some consumers purchase contact lenses from their eye doctor that prescribes them, many will also choose to obtain their lenses from other vendors that will fill their prescriptions, often for considerable savings in price over that charged at the eye doctor’s office. Seeing a loss in revenue, industry groups representing eye doctors are supporting legislation that would impose draconian regulations on those vendors that would severely restrict consumer choices.

The eye care practitioners and contact lens manufacturers have a long history of opposing consumer choices so they can make more money on contact lens sales. The American Optometry Association (AOA), the trade group representing eye care practitioners, has strongly sides with eyes doctors, and against other vendors of contact lenses, in opposing customer choice.

In 1996, 32 state attorneys general sued AOA and the three largest makers of contact lenses, accusing them of not providing consumers their prescriptions, and engaging in other practices to make it tougher for vendors to sell contact lenses at wholesale prices. The AOA falsely claimed that contact lenses purchased outside the eye doctors offices were somehow less safe. This claim was debunked by a 1997 investigation by 17 state attorneys general that found contact lenses purchased at eye care practitioners offices were no more safe than those purchased from other vendors.

Johnson & Johnson is the largest maker of contact lenses, holding about 40 percent of the market share. Last year they spent about $6.4 million on lobbying, promoting the false “safety” message on behalf of contact lenses sold by eye care practitioners, and seeking restrictions in their favor and against other contact lens vendors.

The AOA and the largest contact lens manufacturers, including Alcon, Bausch & Lomb, CooperVision, and Johnson & Johnson, have created and funded a front group to promote the “safety” message, called The Coalition for Patient Vision Care Safety. The group promotes the claim of safety while they are for the cronyism of restricting consumer choices in contact lens purchases to enable eye care practitioners to make more money selling them at higher prices.

The primary objective of the AOA and the contact lens makers it to get Congress to enact the “Contact Lens Consumer Health Protection Act“ (S. 2777), that would impose an excessively complex set of regulations on all the contact lens vendors other than eye doctor offices. The bill will limit consumer choices, slow the prescription verification process, and delay delivery of contact lenses from the vendors while enriching the major contact lens manufacturers and the members of the AOA. Eye care practitioners are among the few professions that both prescribe and also sell the product they prescribe. The other vendors, who can operate at larger economies of scale and sell at wholesale prices, can offer consumer significant savings for the exact same contact lenses made to fit their prescription.

Because of the anti-competitive practices, Congress in 2004 enacted the Fairness in Contact Lens Consumers Act (FCLCA) to protect consumer choice by requiring eye care practitioners to provide patients their prescriptions, and stopping efforts to thwart consumers from purchasing contact lenses from vendors other than the eye doctor’s offices. The effort by the industry’s interest groups to enact the so-called Contact Lens Consumer Health Protection Act is quite simply an attempt roll back their consumer protections, leading to more consumers having to purchase their contact lenses at higher prices from their eye care practitioners.

Congress should say no to the AOA and their cronies, and uphold the rights protected by enacting FCLCA, and defeat the effort to pass this new legislation currently pending that would only restrict customer choice and bolster the profits of the contact lens makers and the eye doctors that sell them.

Can’t The Feds Find, Like, Four Trillion Other Places To Cut First?

Seton Motley | Less Government

This article was first published on Red State

The federal government spends per annum – nearly four TRILLION dollars. Numerically, that’s: $4,000,000,000,000. The entire United States economy – the output of every single man, woman and child in the 300+ million U.S. population – is $18 trillion.

That means a federal government that is allegedly, severely proscribed by our Constitution – spends more than 22% of every penny the nation creates. That is HUGE – and hugely pathetic.

Of course, with those oceans of our money sloshing around, the cavalcade of spending stupidity is nigh endless. Behold but a sampling of a simple Bing search:

Government Spending At Its Stupidest

Here’s a List of Stupid Things the Government Spends Money On

30 Stupid Things The Government Is Spending Money On

The Terrible 20: Stupid Government Programs

15 Stupid Government Programs That Will Make You Want to Vomit

There are organizations dedicated entirely to documenting said stupidity. Citizens Against Government Waste releases an annual Pig Book chronicling lots of the moronity.

Government research money spent is a personal nit for me to pick. The Feds dump our coin into incredibly important things like:

  • How long can a shrimp run on a treadmill?
  • Does playing FarmVille on Facebook help people to make friends and keep them?
  • How do you ride a bike?

I know the fate of the world hangs in the balance – awaiting the outcome of those vital studies.

110551_600

So when government bypasses all of this inanity, and instead dramatically cuts spending on something like Medicare – I get a little perturbed.

Before we press forward – I am not ignorant. Medicare is a huge driver of our nigh $20 trillion (and counting) national debt. And the federal government has made Medicare promises – for which they have no money – to the tune of $38.6 trillion (and counting).

Medicare is already a huge failure – and in fact has been since its 1966 inception. In large part because it has never paid anywhere near a reasonable rate for the goods and services it covers.

Which has royally screwed up private sector health care. Because those government shorts are price-shifted to the rest of us. Every privately insured person has been subsidizing Medicare for decades – in the form of higher insurance premiums and out-of-pocket costs.

And these government under-payments (and the ridiculous regulations, natch) have helped make Medicare a medical provider repellant:

More Doctors Steer Clear of Medicare: “Fewer American doctors are treating patients enrolled in the Medicare health program for seniors, reflecting frustration with its payment rates and pushback against mounting rules, according to health experts.”

Off all the possible options at Congress’ disposal to address this mess – what did our august legislative body do? Cut provider payments. Again. Natch.

CMS to Slash Medicare DMEPOS Rates on July 1, 2016: “According to a CMS fact sheet announcing the July 1 rates, the cumulative cuts to DMEPOS fee schedule amounts under the fully-adjusted rates are substantial, with fees for many items reduced by 50% – 80% compared to 2015 rates….”

Get that? 50%-80% cuts. That’s a lot.

Home Healthcare Industry Braces for Another Medicare Cut: “A proposed $180 million drop in Medicare reimbursement may not be a surprise to home healthcare agencies-but that doesn’t necessarily make it any easier to digest, industry leaders say.”

Local Medical Equipment Stores Struggling with Impending Medicare Reimbursement Rate Cuts: “‘The industry is seeing business closures all over the country right now as a result of these cuts both in metropolitan and in rural areas because people have had trouble, even sustaining the January cuts,’ said CFO of Coastal Med Tech Cathy Hamilton.”

Get that? These are July Medicare cuts – after January Medicare cuts. Yet again targeting, in this instance, home medical equipment providers. Which means Medicare will continue joining with Obamacare to endlessly explode our private insurance costs – and drive providers out of the business of providing.

As but one example on the latter:

170 Year Danville Business Closing: “A home health care business that has operated in Danville 170 years is closing, and owner Steve Gulick says he had no choice because of changes made by the federal government…

“Gulick says changes in Medicare prompted the decision to close. ‘Medicare came in during January of this year and took the top ten items we deal with Medicare – hospital beds, wheelchairs, oxygen, C-Pap Units, walkers and some other ones – and cut the reimbursement by 24-percent.

“‘And then they sent out a newsletter in February and said ‘by the way, we’re going to cut reimbursement again in July by 24-percent.’  So 48-percent in the first six months of the year,’ said Gulick.  ‘We’re not big enough to survive that.’’’

I can’t imagine why not.

This Congress did in fact address these latest cuts to home medical equipment providers – albeit separately. The House passed House Resolution 5210 – the Senate S 2736.

The problem is, Congress left town for recess – before reconciling their bills.

So here’s a thought: Congress should reconvene, reconcile their bills – and collectively pass the result.

Else Medicare takes another spin downward in its very own death spiral.

Ain’t government medicine great?

Seton Motley is the founder and president of Less Government.  Please feel free to follow him on Twitter (@SetonMotley) and Facebook.  It’s his kind of stalking.

The Stock Market Has Predicted The Outcome Of Presidential Elections With 86 Percent Accuracy

Michael Snyder | End of the American Dream

Presidential Election 2016If you want Donald Trump to win the election, then you should be rooting for a stock market crash between now and November.

As you will see below, if stocks go up during the last three months before an election, the incumbent party almost always keeps the White House.  But if stocks go down during the last three months before an election, the incumbent party almost always loses.  Earlier today, Trump warned Americans to get out of the stock market, and if his warning turns out to be correct it will likely benefit him politically as well.  When the general population believes that things are going well, Americans tend to stick with current leadership, but when the general population believes that we have hit rocky times they are usually ready for a change.

It turns out that this very strong correlation between the direction of the stock market and the outcomes of presidential elections goes all the way back to before the days of the Great Depression.  The following comes from Zero Hedge

Since 1928, there have been 22 Presidential Elections. In 14 of them, the S&P 500 climbed during the three months preceding election day. The incumbent President or party won in 12 of those 14 instances. However, in 7 of the 8 elections where the S&P 500 fell over that three month period, the incumbent party lost.

The last time this correlation failed was back in 1980, and at that time Americans were feeling depressed about the country for other reasons.  Overall, the stock market has predicted the outcome of presidential elections with 86 percent accuracy, and that is way too strong of a correlation to ignore.  Just consider the gains or losses that we have seen for the S&P 500 during the last three months prior to each election since 1928 and the outcomes of those elections

1928: 13.6 percent gainincumbent party won

1932: -2.6 percent lossincumbent party lost

1936: 7.9 percent gainincumbent party won

1940: 8.6 percent gainincumbent party won

1944: 2.3 percent gainincumbent party won

1948: 5.4 percent gainincumbent party won

1952: -3.3 percent lossincumbent party lost

1956: -2.6 percent lossincumbent party won

1960: -0.7 percent lossincumbent party lost

1964: 2.6 percent gainincumbent party won

1968: 6.5 percent gainincumbent party lost

1972: 3.0 percent gainincumbent party won

1976: -0.1 percent lossincumbent party lost

1980: 6.7 percent gainincumbent party lost

1984: 4.8 percent gainincumbent party won

1988: 1.9 percent gainincumbent party won

1992: -1.2 percent lossincumbent party lost

1996: 8.2 percent gainincumbent party won

2000: -3.2 percent lossincumbent party lost

2004: 2.2 percent gainincumbent party won

2008: -19.5 percent lossincumbent party lost

2012: 2.5 percent gainincumbent party won

As you can see, the only times the correlation broke down were during the years of 1956, 1968 and 1980.

But this is a very strange year.  We have never seen a candidate like Donald Trump before, and the establishment is pulling out all of the stops in an effort to derail his march to the White House.  So the normal rules may not apply this time around.

On Tuesday, Barack Obama took time out of his busy schedule to tell the press that Trump is “woefully unprepared” to be president, and he called on Republican leaders to pull their support from him

“There has to come a point at which you say somebody who makes those kinds of statements doesn’t have the judgment, the temperament, the understanding to occupy the most powerful position in the world,” Obama said at the event with PM Lee Hsien Loong.

“There has to be a point in which you say this is somebody I can’t support for president of United States,” the president said. “There has to be a point in which you say ‘enough.’”

The funny thing is that the exact same things could be said of Hillary Clinton.  In fact, three of the top four hardcover books on the New York Times nonfiction best sellers list are about how Hillary Clinton does not have the judgment, the temperament or the character to be the president of the United States.  The following comes from the Washington Examiner

For the first time, three of the top four New York Times nonfiction best sellers are anti-Clinton books.

Two new books jumped to the front of the all-important hardcover nonfiction list just this week: Armageddon, by Dick Morris and Eileen McGann, and Hillary’s America, by Dinesh D’Souza.

They join No. 1 Crisis of Character by former Secret Serviceman Gary J. Byrne which has been on top of the list for four straight weeks.

If you want to see where Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and the Democrats want to take America, all you have to do is to look at the meltdown of the “socialist paradise” in Venezuela.  For a while socialism seemed to work just fine there, but now desperate citizens wait in lines for up to 12 hours hoping to get something to feed their families…

A BBC journalist, who attempted to film the crisis, was stopped and forced by soldiers to delete footage of a protest outside a supermarket as desperate Venezuelans waited for food.

Baying crowds shouted “We want to buy stuff!” as they grouped outside the store in the country’s capital, Caracas.

BBC journalist Vladimir Hernandez reports that many people approached him to say they had queued for 12 hours without being able to buy what they wanted.

This is what the endgame of socialism looks like.

Unfortunately, the American people don’t understand this.

Unfortunately, about half the country wants to make Hillary Clinton the next president of the United States.

And in the end, the outcome of this election may be swayed one way or the other based on what the stock market does between now and November.

I don’t know what that says about our country, but it isn’t good.

If the American people still had any sense, an ultra-corrupt, morally bankrupt politician such as Hillary Clinton would not have a prayer of being elected dog catcher, much less president of the United States.  The fact that about half the country plans to vote for her at this point is extremely frightening, and it may indicate that this nation is in far worse shape than most of us would like to admit.

Source: End of the American Dream

UN Drug Access Panel Decision Endangers Millions

UN drug access panel targets patent rights
UN drug access panel targets patent rights

At a time when a third of the developing world lacks access to medicine considered “essential” by the World Health Organization (WHO), the UN should be taking any actions but those that might further limit access to those drugs. A recent decision by a UN panel will further inhibit effort to expand access to needed drugs, and could endanger millions of lives. Based on the mistaken notion that the patent rights of pharmaceutical companies are at odds with access to medicines, the UN High-Level Panel on Access to Medicines has falsely concluded that eliminating patent rights is needed to further worldwide access to medicines.

The drug panel was created “to review and assess proposals and recommend solutions for remedying the policy incoherence between the justifiable rights of inventors, international human rights law, trade rules and public health in the context of health technologies.”

While the panel scapegoats patent rights for the shortcomings in access to essential medicines in many areas of the world, most of those drugs are not protected by patents, they are available in generic versions. Despite that, millions of patients around the world still lack access to these medications.

The United States has contributed more than $110 million to the efforts of WHO to expand access to essential medicines and eradicating diseases around the world. Additionally, American pharmaceutical companies also spent almost $60 billion on research on more than 5000 medicines including those for HIV/AIDS, cancer, diabetes and other diseases. The UN should work together with the United States and the pharmaceutical companies to solve these problems rather than creating division between the various stakeholders from whom solutions to these problems can come from.

Blaming patent rights not only fails to offer a solution to the problems of access to essential medications, it is very much an impediment to that goal. It is through the protection of these intellectual property rights of drug inventors, one of the key advances that has helped civilization move forward, that the very drugs that have cured and treated so many diseases, have been developed, tested, and brought to market. This financially risky process costs considerable sums of money, and in the end, benefits us all when diseases are eradicated and illnesses are cured due to the innovation of drug inventors. If it weren’t for patents for new drugs, there would be no incentive to create those drugs. Eliminating patent rights is a solution to a non-existent problem, and one that would only further hinder efforts to expand access to drugs.

The UN drug panel should look elsewhere to find the real problems, and their answers, in expanding access to essential medications. In many areas of the planet there are problems with distribution and storage of medicines that prevent them reaching the patients who need them. The UN can look at shortages in medical expertise, problems with physical delivery systems in remote areas and limits in government health infrastructures that are challenges to access to essential medicines in many areas of the world. It will be by looking at those issues, not pitting patent rights against patent access, that the UN drug panel can work together to find reasonable and workable solutions to the challenges faced.

Given that the charge to the drug panel, by the UN, included the notion that patent rights are somehow in conflict with efforts to make essential drugs more accessible shows that the UN is not serious about expanding access to necessary drugs around the world. Given that many diseases easily treated or cured in Western nations that still plague the less developed parts of the world illustrates expansion of access, not targeting intellectual property rights, is what’s needed. If the UN drug access panel would realize this, it would go so much further in saving millions of lives around the world threatened by diseases and illnesses that are can remedied with available medications.

Republicans Stand for Consumers with Repeal of the Durbin Amendment

Republicans push for repeal of the Durbin Amendment
Republicans push for repeal of the Durbin Amendment

Congressional Republicans, lead by Rep. Randy Neugebauer (R-TX), have taken a strong stand for consumers by pushing for the repeal of the Durbin Amendment. Enacted as part of the Dodd-Frank financial regulations bill in 2010, this amendment proposed by Sen. Richard Durbin (D-IL) capped the fees charged to merchants for customers using debit cards. Supporters claimed at the time that banks and other debit card providers were making massive profits from the interchange fees, and imposing price controls would lead to savings for consumers.

Six years later, it is clear the price controls on interchange fees have failed miserably, and consumers have enjoyed no savings as a result. The law costs consumers as well, an estimated $8 billion annually from increased bank fees that more than make up for revenues lost from decreasing interchange fees for non-exempt banks (those with more than $10 billion in assets) from $0.44 to $0.24. Right after Dodd-Frank was signed by Barack Obama, Bank of America announced it would make up for the expected lost revenue by imposing a $5.00 monthly fee on checking accounts for debit card usage. Many other banks followed sued, and free checking went from being almost universal nationwide to becoming quite scarce. The Durbin Amendment proves, once again, that price controls don’t work.

Christopher Versace, writing for Forbes, demolishes the notion that politicians can set prices for products and services better than the free market can, “Most economists and many conservatives in Congress are well aware that government price controls make for bad policy. They know that politicians are no more accurate at determining the price of goods than meteorologists are at forecasting the weather,” while pointing out that price controls invariably lead to shortages and economic crises.

Rep. Neugebauer has proposed a very sensible solution to this problem, H.R. 5465, a bill to repeal the anti-consumer Durbin Amendment. While Sen. Durbin has vowed, “Repeal of the Durbin Amendment will not happen on my watch,” House Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensalring (R-TX) and other Republican members are the Neugebauer repeal bill.

What the Durbin Amendment did do was artificially shift over $30 billion in revenue from one industry to another,” Neugebauer said. “Instead of promoting free market principles and technological innovation, such as enhanced data security capabilities, the Durbin Amendment was nothing more than a government action to manipulate the marketplace.”

Raging against debit card fees, or any other fees charged by banks, is popular target for politicians who think they can gain publish support taking another shot at banks and financial services providers. Attacks like this almost invariably lead to some form of price controls being proposed by do-gooder liberal politicians who claim to protecting the consumers while enacting regulations that are always quite costly to consumers, such as the Durbin Amendment.

While it’s not always to easy to defend what appears to be indefensible by appearing to be standing for the banks demonized by liberal politicians, Republicans are to be applauded to countering the perception and standing up against the true economic harm done to consumers by the Durbin Amendment. Consumers want a return to the days when they paid lower fees to the banks and had free checking services. If Congressional Republicans succeed in repealing the Durbin Amendment, those days will be back again soon.