Image Credit: Thomas Hawk/Flickr
A new poll from TransferWise shows that 35 percent of those born in the United States would consider ditching their home country to live elsewhere; that number skyrockets among those aged 18-34, the so-called millennials, 55 percent of whom said they would think of taking off if given the chance.
Most of those millennials cite economics as a chief factor in their desire to leave: 43 percent of men and 38 percent of women said they’d leave if they could get paid more in another country.
The rationales for staying in America, articulated by Americans, are particularly weak: 59 percent say they would stay because “it is home,” another 58 percent say they would stay thanks to romantic and family ties – and then the stats drop precipitously, with just 22 percent stating they would stay for the democratic society, 17 percent for the culture, 10 percent for the good future for children, 5 percent for wealth, 3 percent for low crime, and 2 percent for low taxes.
All of which makes sense, given that America has been moving in the wrong direction with regard to preservation of democratic society, a common culture, a good future for children, wealth, low crime, or low taxes.
There comes a time when every conservative thinker tries to find some common ground with the left in some area. Today it’s criminal rights and the headlines have Rand Paul denouncing the racist justice system while Grover Norquist and the Koch Brothers join with the left to back their reforms. As usually happens, the conservatives or libertarians turn out to be the useful idiots of the left.
Liberals have a long history of being the left’s useful idiots. It’s only fair that libertarians get a turn.
Republicans are still trying to figure out a truce on gay marriage. They retreated to civil unions, then accepted a full defeat on gay marriage and then acted baffled when Christian bakery owners were dragged into court for refusing to participate in gay weddings. When the left insisted that gay marriage was a civil rights issue, they refused to take them as their word.
Now they’re wondering how an accommodation can be made with tranny rights. A brief look back at gay rights will show that the only possible accommodation is one in which men in dresses have a legal right to use the ladies room and every single closed female space and event. And yes, that means your business will be shut down if you object to Steve using the female locker room.
Image Credit: mises.ca
In Justice Scalia’s dissenting opinion in Obergefell v. Hodges he said, “It is of no special importance to me what the law says about marriage. It is of overwhelming importance, however, who it is that rules me. Today’s decree says that my Ruler, and the Ruler of 320 million Americans coast-to-coast, is a majority of nine lawyers on the Supreme Court.”
Whatever one’s views on marriage, our Founders made it clear that the federal government is a child of the states — not the other way around. The Supreme Court’s decision to legislate from the bench on a matter rightly left to the purview of the states is among the most blatant instances of federal overreach this country has ever seen.
Almost a third of American adults own a gun, but the rate varies widely by state and tops out at almost 62 percent of people in Alaska, new survey data show.
Gun ownership was closely tied to “social gun culture,” wherein family and friends also own guns and think less of non-gun owners, researchers found.
Last night a friend of mine sent me a link to a blog that is hosted and written by David Stockman. David Stockman was the former budget director for Ronaldus Magnus until for some reason he was taken to the woodshed and fired. Oh, I know what it was. He disavowed supply-side, which was his own creation. Anyway, Stockman has run a bunch of numbers and has been able to put all of this in context and has concluded that the actual unemployment rate in the United States of America is not 5.5%, and it’s not 12.5% or 13%. It is 42.9%.
Let me share with you a little bit of how he gets there.
It’s a long blog post. I can’t… I’m not even gonna try to summarize most of it. I’m just gonna get to the meat of it as it relates to this. But it’s an all-out assault on Keynesian economics and the Federal Reserve and the damage that both have done and continue to do to the US economy. But here’s the focal point on unemployment. “In fact,” he writes, “the Census Bureau survey takers and the [Bureau of Labor Statistics] numbers crunchers have not the foggiest idea as to what the real world’s potential labor force computes to, and how much of it is deployed on any given day, month or quarter.”
That’s economics-speak for they don’t have any idea how many people are working. The “world’s potential labor force,” meaning how many people in the world have an opportunity to hold a job and go to work at it. Nobody knows. They have no way to compute it. And how much of that force is “deployed,” that’s just military lingo for how many people getting up and going to work every day. “Accordingly,” he writes, “printing money and pegging interest rates in pursuit of ‘full employment’, which is the essence of the Yellen version of monetary central planning…”
Image Credit: daij62
Are key Republican leaders in D.C. from the Senate, House and Supreme Court being blackmailed? Tell me you haven’t thought the exact same thing? Something is very wrong. Something smells rotten in DC. Rotten like a dead fish left at the front door of a Congressmen’s office by the Obama Crime Family. Rotten like a photo of a Supreme Court Justice with his robe down at his ankles.
Because what’s happening just isn’t normal. Please tell me how it’s possible that President Obama and his socialist cabal suffered the most massive and historic defeat in modern political history only 9 months ago- and since then they’ve gotten everything they’ve ever wanted handed to them on a silver platter. Does that make sense to you?
The legal argument of gay marriage proponents is that because gay marriage is legal in a majority of states, that “right” cannot be infringed by the remaining states which opposed gay marriage. The U.S. Supreme Court, in granting this new, nationwide right to gay marriage, cited the Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution, Section 1, which states:
No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
The actual ruling text of the SCOTUS decision makes it clear that its “equal protection” logic would apply universally to concealed carry gun rights which already exist in a majority of states
Both decisions were judicial activism, plain and simple. Both were lawless.
As Justice Scalia put it regarding Obamacare, “Words no longer have meaning if an Exchange that is not established by a State is ‘established by the State.’ . . . We should start calling this law SCOTUSCare.” And as he observed regarding marriage, “Today’s decree says that . . . the Ruler of 320 million Americans coast-to-coast is a majority of the nine lawyers on the Supreme Court.”
In an utter embarrassment to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and anti-gun legislators in Albany, recently released New York State Police data reveals massive noncompliance with the SAFE Act’s registration provisions. Out of an estimated 1-1.2 million semi-automatic firearms within the state that are required to be registered under the new law, 23,847 people have registered a grand total of 44,485 guns. Using the lower estimate of one million semi-automatic firearms, the new data shows a compliance rate of 4%.
The scale of noncompliance was only revealed following a lawsuit brought by a New York gun rights organization. In 2014, the New York State Police rejected requests for the number of registered semi-automatics. On April 30, New York Acting Supreme Court Justice Thomas J. McNamara determined that the state police had improperly withheld the information from the public, and ordered them to turn over the registration data.
Following the passage of the SAFE Act, many New York gun owners made it clear that they would not register their firearms by the April 15, 2014 deadline. Numerous protests against the SAFE Act were held from Buffalo to Albany, with noncompliance as an important theme. Some Second Amendment supporters in Saratoga Springs went so far as burn close to a thousand registration forms. A gun rights advocate at the Saratoga Springs rally, told a local newspaper, “We are opposed to registration because the evidence is clear that registration leads to confiscation.”
Gun owners concerns over confiscation are well-founded. Many New Yorkers are likely familiar with the repeated confiscations carried out by New York City officials. In 1967, New York City enacted a law requiring the registration of rifles and shotguns. Subsequently, in 1991 the city banned many semi-automatic firearms. As New York City already possessed a registry of firearms and their owners, the city notified the owners that their newly illegal firearms must be removed from the five boroughs (not a realistic option for many people of lesser means), permanently disabled, or relinquished to the authorities. This shameful scenario played out again in 2013, when the NYPD sent out another round of letters to New York City gun owners, once again demanding the removal, destruction, or surrender of legally registered firearms made illegal by a subsequent law.
While the recent experience in New York is strong evidence of the American public’s unwillingness to comply with firearms registration, it is only the latest instance illustrating the futility of these types of laws. In Connecticut, a 2013 law required residents to register certain types of semiautomatic firearms, and individual magazines with a capacity greater than 10, by January 1, 2014. Out of an estimated several hundred thousand guns and 2.4 million magazines that were required to be registered, by the deadline Connecticut gun owners had registered 50,016 firearms and a mere 38,290 magazines.
In March, the Sandy Hook Advisory Commission, assembled by Governor Dannel Malloy “to review current policy and make specific recommendations in the areas of public safety, with particular attention paid to school safety, mental health, and gun violence prevention,” issued its final report. The commission suggested that Connecticut “Prohibit the possession… of any firearm capable of firing more than 10 rounds without reloading.”
Similarly, in 1989 California enacted a law requiring registration of certain semi-automatic firearms. According to a February 17, 1992 Los Angeles Times article, in the years since enactment only 46,062 semi-autos were registered. The article goes on to note, “The state Department of Justice has estimated there are 200,000 to 300,000. Others have calculated as many as 450,000 to 600,000.” The authorities attempted to bolster the lackluster compliance with a 90-day amnesty period at the start of 1992; this program only netted another 13,470 firearms.
The results of New Jersey’s semi-auto ban were comparable. An April 17, 1992 New York Times article titled, “Owners of Assault Guns Slow to Obey Law,” notes, “In New Jersey, which enacted an assault weapon ban in 1990, 2,000 weapons have been surrendered, made inoperable or registered as collectors’ items, according to the State Police. The state Attorney General’s office estimates that there are between 20,000 and 50,000 assault weapons in New Jersey.”
During Cuomo’s 2014 reelection campaign, the New York State Democratic Committee ran a pro-Cuomo campaign ad that claimed the governor had helped to enact “the smartest gun law in America.” In reality, considering just how few New Yorkers have bothered to comply with the registration provisions of SAFE Act, along with the inclusion of unworkable provisions like the infamous seven-round magazine limit, Cuomo has the distinction of having supported one of the confusing, irrelevant, and unworkable gun laws in America.
Whether to capitalize on a tragedy for political purposes, or because their urge to “do something” isn’t tempered by a sense of reality, Senators Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) and Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) reacted to the deplorable murders at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, last week by saying that they may reintroduce so-called “universal” background check legislation to require background checks on private sales and trades of firearms, including those between many family members and friends. NRA members and supporters will recall that a previous version of the Manchin-Toomey “universal” background check legislation was soundly defeated in the U.S. Senate in 2013.
As we noted at that time, such a system could only be enforced through national gun registration. But don’t just take our word for it, even Obama administration “experts” wrote that the effectiveness of “universal” background checks “depends on . . . requiring gun registration.”
Earlier this week, The Washington Post reported that Manchin wants to focus on preventing the acquisition of guns by people diagnosed with a mental illness. However, the person who admitted to the South Carolina church shooting had no such diagnosis in his background. Like the perpetrators of a large percentage of other multiple victim shootings, he passed a background check to acquire a gun because there was nothing in his record to prohibit him from doing so.
Background checks don’t stop criminals from stealing guns, or buying them on the black market, as noted by the Bureau of Justice Statistics in Table 14 of a May 2013 report. And they don’t stop criminals from getting guns through straw purchases—using people who can pass background checks to buy guns for people who cannot pass them—as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives indicated in a separate report.
In addition, there is another reason to oppose expanding the scope, intrusiveness and record-keeping practices of so-called “universal” background check systems. Giving in to what gun control supporters call “common sense” restrictions would simply take us closer to their ultimate goal.
Last year, Hillary Clinton said that people shouldn’t be allowed to even have an opinion in opposition to gun control. And just last week, former president Bill Clinton, who would presumably wield significant influence over public policy if Mrs. Clinton is elected president in 2016, said people shouldn’t be allowed to “walk around” with guns in public. At the same time, the Violence Policy Center encouraged people to believe there’s not much to be gained by carrying guns in public in the first place, falsely claiming that “Guns are rarely used to kill criminals or stop crimes.”
And then there’s former Maryland governor Martin O’Malley, challenging Hillary Clinton for the Democratic Party’s 2016 presidential nomination, who’s made it very clear that he supports a ban on the private possession of firearms. O’Malley’s position reflects gun control supporters’ refusal to recognize that people have a fundamental right to possess guns for self-defense; that guns are often used for self-defense; and that criminals would reap an enormous advantage from any gun-ban that is effectively implemented. As civil rights attorney Don Kates and Professor Gary Mauser have noted, “violent crime would not fall if guns were totally banned to civilians . . . . [I]ndividuals who commit violent crimes will either find guns despite severe controls or will find other weapons to use.”
Indeed, the FBI reports that one-third of murders, 59 percent of robberies and 78 percent of aggravated assaults reported to law enforcement agencies are committed without firearms. As an example of the first of those statistics, Charles C.W. Cooke noted for National Review earlier this month that a woman was brutally killed by a knife-wielding attacker recently, unable to defend herself because her pending New Jersey handgun permit application hadn’t been approved.
Meanwhile, the Sydney Morning Herald reports that President Barack Obama, always enamored by gun bans in other parts of the world, cited, as he has previously, Australia’s massive gun ban and confiscation via a mandatory “buy-back” in the 1990s as an example of what he’d like to see happen in America.
Obama also blamed the Senate’s rejection of his 2013 gun control proposals on that perennial anti-gunner bogeyman, “the grip of the NRA on Congress.” What he fails to realize is that the NRA’s strength comes from its millions of members and tens of millions of supporters throughout the country. As a result, to gun control supporters’ everlasting regret, public opinion places more faith in guns and gun ownership than in gun control.
Bill de Blasio don’t get no respect, and that’s no surprise: He hasn’t earned any.
No New York City mayor in recent memory has looked more ridiculous than de Blasio does today. He’s openly mocked in Albany, and folks are slyly smirking behind their hands in City Hall — and why not, given the political drubbing he took this week.
As for policy defeats — don’t ask. They were many, varied, consequential and quite deliberately inflicted — in part because he’s an ideologue and in part because he’s all talk and no follow-through.
But mostly it’s because his administration lacks skill, determination and an understanding that past actions can have real consequences in the present.
So, where to begin?