Is Trump Correct — Putin a “Stronger” Leader than Obama?

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Poor Democrats.  They hang on to every word spoken by Donald Trump hoping to catch something they can exploit.  A recent episode involved Trump saying they Vladimir Putin has been a stronger leader in Russia than Barack Obama has been in the United States.  Trump also said that he doesn’t like the Russian form of government.1  Nevertheless, the Democrats are ignoring that last comment and staunchly maintain that Putin was being complimented by Trump as they rush to defend the “savior” of our nation.2

But we’ll go along with the Democrats, disregard the important qualifier and stick to analyzing the “stronger” part.

Yes,  Putin  Does  Get  His  Way

When it comes to national leaders, “strong” implies getting what you want.  Putin has pushed his weight around by withholding important natural gas to several countries.3  He has also acquired the Crimea unjustly and is taking advantage of Obama’s unwillingness to enforce the infamous “red line in the sand” in Syria by doing whatever he feels like.4

Score one for Trump.

….  But  So  Did  Obama  with  “Obamacare”

So, has Obama been denied at home? Sadly, very rarely.

He was able to have “Obamacare” approved by Congress even though its chief proponents admittedly didn’t know much about it.5  This legislation controls the health industry which is 1/6 of our entire economy!6  That qualifies as a major impact.  Sorry, one point against Trump.

Oh, by the way, since Obama got his way on this one, insurance companies are losing money and pulling out of many states.7  Premiums  are skyrocketing even though the President said they would decrease.  Many are losing their doctors and even insurance coverage — something the President promised would not happen.8

Obama has been very strong in this issue… The trouble is, it has also made our nation weaker with regard to insurance and health care. Hmm, looks like being a strong leader can be very detrimental.

Pushed  Common  Core  with  Misleading  Origins  and  Purpose

With his administration’s support, Common Core has made intrusions into many states education under the guise of being “developed by the teachers and the states” when it wasn’t.9  It also claims to raise education standards when it’s really a disguised opportunity for social engineering.10

Yes, Obama has a strong administration whose apparent goal is for a less informed electorate which means a more impressionable and vulnerable citizenry.

We have been warned about this.

“Convinced that the people are the only safe depositories of their own liberty, and that they are not safe unless enlightened to a certain degree, I have looked on our present state of liberty as a short-lived possession unless the mass of the people could be informed to a certain degree.” –Thomas Jefferson to Littleton Waller Tazewell, 1805.”11

Sure, Obama is stronger, but it makes our future weaker. Trump missed this one, too, but we don’t gain from it.

Then  There’s  the  Benghazi  Lie  Many  Believed

The President, along with Hillary Clinton’s cooperation, made enough people believe the lie that  Benghazi was a result of a video.  This helped to protect his thinning lead in the 2012 election by covering up his faulty assertion that he was defeating terrorism.  Yes, a very strong-willed leader who makes it more dangerous for U.S. citizens abroad.  This is a good thing, Democrats?

Federal  Debt  Driven  to  Perilous  Heights

Obama called George W. Bush unpatriotic for the $4.3 trillion increase in the federal debt during his two terms — yet Obama has pushed the debt $9 trillion12 and his adoring supporters say he’s doing a fine job as President.  Obama’s not just strong, he’s stiff-arming our entire country into insolvency!

Other  Examples  of  Obaminations

We can skip the disgraceful fact that Obama likes to deny that there are: problems with the Veterans Administration, examples of unethical behavior toward conservatives by the IRS, racist motivations in the agenda of Black Lives Matter, etc. etc. which prove that Trump was wrong.

Obama is a strong leader who is taking our nation to even new lows.

Hillary’s  Stiff-Arming  is  Legendary,  Too

We should not despair.  If elected, Hillary Clinton will continue the same “strong leader” philosophy.  She has a long track record to prove this. Highlights include stiff-arming those women who accused her President husband of improprieties to the background.13

She was instrumental in securing the 2012 election for her political rival Obama via the Benghazi travesty.

Approximately 55% of her non-governmental visitors to the State Department were Clinton foundation contributors.14  That’s knowing how to take care of personal business with national impact.

Of course, her crowning achievement is the maneuvering she and husband Bill pulled off to make FBI Director James Comey petrified of indicting her.  And we can’t forget Hillary Clinton’s influence  with Attorney General Loretta Young who arbitrarily decided not to follow the advice of three FBI groups to investigate her further.  Obama and Ms. Clinton are seriously strong.

Putin  Doesn’t  Have  the  Patent  on  Strong-Armed  Leadership… Unfortunately

It’s now obvious that “strong” does not always mean “good” just as “change” doesn’t always mean “improvement.”

Vladimir Putin and his Soviet ancestors (excluding the respectable Mikhail Gorbachev) might actually consider it a compliment being associated with those two.

 

 

1 – “Mike Pence defends Donald Trump comments on Vladimir Putin: ‘inarguable’,” by Tal Kopan, http://www.cnn.com/2016/09/08/politics/mike-pence-on-donald-trump-vladimir-putin/, 9/9/2016.

2 – “In the pre-recorded program that was broadcast Sunday night on BET, Foxx urges the audience to ‘first of all, give an honor to God — and our Lord and savior, Barack Obama!’”
“The audience responds with cheers as Foxx shouts the president’s name again and urges them to ‘stand up.’  From “Jamie Foxx takes heat for calling Obama ‘our Lord and Savior’” by Isaac Brekken, http://www.cbsnews.com/news/jamie-foxx-takes-heat-for-calling-obama-our-lord-and-savior/, 11/27/2012.

3 – “Concern about a European energy crisis stems from the disputebetween Russia and Ukraine over Crimea and eastern Ukraine. This prompted Moscow to halt gas supplies to Ukraine in June and talks to settle the dispute have since broken down…”

“Reports claim Russian gas deliveries to Poland dropped by 45 per cent on Wednesday, the third day of decreases.”

“Russia has this week, by threatening to reduce exports to the EU, to prevent ‘reverse flows’ to Ukraine, meaning Ukraine may be forced to siphon off gas flowing through the country to European destinations. Against this backdrop, analysts fear Russia could halt all supplies to and through the Ukraine as in 2006 and 2009…”

“Finland is the next most at-risk because it gets all of its gas from Russia and has no other supply options, while Poland, Turkey and Bulgaria are the next most exposed, according to a new report from Cologne University’s Institute of Energy Economics.”

From “Fear over Russian gas switch-off sees EU states stockpile supplies,” by Tom Bawden, http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/fear-over-russian-gas-switch-off-sees-eu-states-stockpile-supplies-9727466.html, 9/11/2014.

4 – “Former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on Tuesday said President Obama damaged U.S. credibility, when he decided not to take military action against Syrian leader Bashar Assad, despite drawing a ‘red line’ against the use of chemical weapons.”

From “Panetta: Obama’s ‘red line’ on Syria damaged US credibility,” by Justin Sink, http://thehill.com/policy/international/219984-panetta-obamas-red-line-on-syria-damaged-us-credibility, 10/7/2014.

5 – “Pelosi adds: ‘But we have to pass the bill so you can find out what is in it, away from the fog of controversy.’”
From “Texas GOP says Speaker Nancy Pelosi said people will know contents of terrible health-care plan after it passes,” by W. Gardner Selby, http://www.politifact.com/texas/statements/2010/mar/15/republican-party-texas/texas-gop-says-speaker-nancy-pelosi-said-people-wi/, 3/15/2010.

6 – “The increase will bump up the health share of the economy from 17.5 percent in 2014…”
From “Health Care Expenditures Heading Toward 20 Percent of Economy,” by Caitlin Owens, https://morningconsult.com/2016/07/13/health-care-expenditures-heading-toward-20-percent-economy/, 7/13/2016.

7 – “On Monday evening, Aetna, one of the nation’s largest insurers, announced it is pulling out of the Obamacare insurance exchanges in 11 of the 15 states it currently operates.  According to Business Insider, Aetna ‘determined that the nearly $300 million in pretax loss it was sustaining on an annual basis was not worth the business.’ Which is an understatement, to put it mildly.”

“Two other top-five insurers already announced plans to pull out of Obamacare earlier this year.  In July, Humana said that next year it ‘will only offer individual plans in 156 counties in 11 states, down from 1,351 counties across 19 states this year.’  And the CEO of the nation’s largest insurer, United Healthcare, announced in April ‘we will remain in only a handful of states.’  United Healthcare had previously said that it lost $475 million last year on its policies in the Obamacare exchanges.”  From “After $300 Million Loss, Another Major Insurer Pulls Out Of Obamacare,” by Mark Hemingway, http://www.weeklystandard.com/after-300-million-loss-another-major-insurer-pulls-out-of-obamacare/article/2003852, 8/16/2016.

8 – “’If you like your health care plan, you can keep it,’ President Barack Obama said — many times — of his landmark new law.”

“But the promise was impossible to keep.”
“So this fall, as cancellation letters were going out to approximately 4 million Americans, the public realized Obama’s breezy assurances were wrong.”
From “Lie of the Year: ‘If you like your health care plan, you can keep it’,” by Angie Drobnic Holan, http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2013/dec/12/lie-year-if-you-like-your-health-care-plan-keep-it/, 12/12/2013.

9 – “Common Core claims that “The federal government was NOT involved in the development of the standards.”  Technically, yes, but that’s a half-truth to be discussed later in this section. Nevertheless, the CCSS also did not come from the states as implied.

According to Diane Ravitch, former assistant U.S. secretary of education under presidents George H. W. Bush and Clinton:

“They were developed by an organization called Achieve and the National Governors Association, both of which were generously funded by the Gates Foundation. There was minimal public engagement in the development of Common Core.  Their creation was neither grassroots nor did it emanate from the states.”

 From “Common Core: Slingshot to Progress or Spider Web? Part 2 of 5 [Creation of the Standards and Comparison with those of the States],”  by Tony Rubio and posted by the Ohio Conservative Review, http://ohioconservativereview.com/2015/03/17/common-core-slingshot-to-progress-or-spider-web-part-2-of-5-creation-of-the-standards-and-comparison-with-those-of-the-states/, 3/17/2015.

10 – “Finally, the gravity of the CCSS movement is described by an Arizona teacher (Brad McQueen, 5th grade) who was asked by his state’s board of education to participate in CCSS review in Chicago of the ELA standards. It’s what could be called a modern day version of “thought-crime” — a mere thirty years after Orwell’s book.

“‘My turning point came when in answer to questions I had about a student writing sample, my Common Core handler blurted out, “We don’t ever care what the kids’ opinions are. If they write what they think or put forth their opinion then they will fail the test.””

“‘I have always taught my students to think for themselves. They are to study multiple views on a given topic, then take their own position and support it with evidence. “That is the old way of writing, “my Common Core handler sighed. “We want students to repeat the opinions of the ‘experts’ that we expose them to on the test. This is the ‘new’ way of writing with the Common Core.’”

“‘I discovered later that this was not just some irritated, rogue Common Core handler, rather this was a philosophy I heard repeated again and again. I pointed out that this was not the way that teachers teach in the classroom. She retorted that, “We expect that when the test comes out the teachers in the classroom will imitate the skills emphasized on the test (teach to the test) and employ this new way of writing and thinking.’”This was a complete kick in the stomach moment for me.’”

“The Left’s agenda is coming through loud and clear.”

From “Common Core: Slingshot to Progress or Spider Web? Part 4 of 5 [The probability of a national curriculum and a not-so-hidden agenda],” by Tony Rubio, posted 3/21/2015 on the Ohio Conservative Review, http://ohioconservativereview.com/2015/03/21/common-core-slingshot-to-progress-or-spider-web-part-4-of-5-the-probability-of-a-national-curriculum-and-a-not-so-hidden-agenda/

11http://famguardian.org/Subjects/Politics/thomasjefferson/jeff1350.htm

12 – https://cartaremi.wordpress.com/2016/08/31/jeremiah-was-criticized-for-speaking-truth-of-bad-state-of-affairs-trump-knows-how-he-felt/

13 – “’90s Scandals Threaten to Erode Hillary Clinton’s Strength With Women,” by Amy Chozick, http://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/21/us/politics/90s-scandals-threaten-to-erode-hillary-clintons-strength-with-women.html?_r=0, 1/20/2016.

14 – “Hillary camp launches desperate ‘cherry-picking’ defense after her calendars reveal Clinton Foundation donors got face-time when she was secretary of state, “ by David Martosko, http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3756447/Hillary-camp-launches-desperate-cherry-picking-defense-calendars-reveal-Clinton-Foundation-donors-got-face-time-secretary-state.html, 8/24/2016.

Same-Sex “Marriage,” Civil Rights for African-Americans, Abortion and Slavery

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This title is a lead-in to discussing the “up is down and down is up” positions of U.S. liberals.  Given an opportunity to evaluate these, the Left would undoubtedly assert that three of the four are acceptable and desirable.

Yet in Judeo-Christian reality, the reverse is true. Three out of four are strongly unacceptable.

The first difficulty with the liberal position is the fallacy that “marriage equality” for the homosexual community is equivalent to racial civil rights.  Being African-American is not disordered behavior.  It is one of several genetic expressions of the human race — everyone of whom has inalienable rights.

The disordered condition of homosexuality1, whether innate or acquired2,3, requires the same compassion as due every other human situation.4  However, marriage is not an inalienable/ civil right and it cannot be viewed as equivalent to the racial civil rights cause.5  There is no justification that it be extended to everyone by civil jurisdictions who have no authority over the definition of this non-secular institution.6

At least most U.S. citizens agree that slavery is despicable.  For some reason, however, the evil of abortion is not as readily recognized as similarly heinous.  Perhaps it’s because the fallible Supreme Court erred seriously erred in deciding that the killing of the most vulnerable human beings was legal.  The era of convenience ushered in by the 1973 decision is so contrary to Judeo-Christian beliefs that it defies logic.7

Given the reversed vision of the Left, why should we trust them to issues like national security, honest elections, the federal debt, religious freedom and wages?

With their inclinations, they are likely to want unvetted immigration from terrorist hot spots, to declare that photo ID’s are more important for boarding a plane or buying alcohol than for voting, to think we can spend ourselves out of economic stagnation without slowing our economy further8, to prosecute those who believe marriage is between one man and one woman and believe that a federal minimum wage is appropriate even though the cost of living in the least expensive state is 38% less than in the most.9

Wouldn’t this be an insane world if the current generation of liberals had their way?

 

1 – “Sexuality is ordered to the conjugal love of man and woman.  In marriage the physical intimacy of the spouses becomes a sign and pledge of spiritual communion.  Marriage bonds between baptized persons are sanctified by the sacrament.”  Paragraph 2360 from the Catechism of the Catholic Church, second edition; Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 25th printing, November 2013.

2 – “Being homosexual is only partly due to gay gene, research finds,” by Sarah Knapton, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/science-news/10637532/Being-homosexual-is-only-partly-due-to-gay-gene-research-finds.html, 2/13/2014.

3 – “Homosexuality is learned behavior,” by Manin Brown, http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-755425, 2/29/2012.

 4 – “The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible.  This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial.  They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity.  Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.”  Paragraph 2358 from the Catechism of the Catholic Church, second edition; Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 25th printing, November 2013.

5 – “But to examine this question further – while a civil right is meant to guarantee equality in particular points of law, that is only one half of the picture.  There is an old saying that goes back to Plato – equality for equals, inequality for unequals. In other words, when a right is applied equally to everyone in a given class, it is because it presupposes there are no essential distinctions within that class that would preclude the right from being equally applied.  To take an example the same-sex crowd always brings up, this is why the old Jim Crow laws against interracial marriage were struck down as civil rights violations.  It was recognized that men were men, and women were women; race is not intrinsic to sexuality, therefore there is no compelling distinction between the races that would preclude them from freely entering into the married state.  Essentially, the overturning of the old prohibitions on interracial marriage supports traditional marriage because the law recognized that any man can marry any woman.  Therefore the racist Jim Crow marriage laws were true instances of civil inequality because they were proposing distinctions in the application of rights which were in fact irrelevant; any man is capable of entering into marriage with any woman, and the right for any man to enter into the married state with any woman could not be infringed…”

“… Any person can enter into the married state, but not under any circumstances they may choose. The question is not one of civil rights but of the definition of marriage, which is what homosexual activists contest. Since gender difference and sexual intercourse is intrinsic to understanding the institution of marriage, it is no discrimination of civil rights to say that the married state cannot be conferred on those whose relationships do not involve sexual intercourse.”  From “Homosexual Marriage is not a Civil Right,” http://www.unamsanctamcatholicam.com/social-teaching/moral-issues/93-social-teaching/moral-issues/445-homosexual-marriage-is-not-a-civil-right.html

6 – “’The intimate community of life and love which constitutes the married state has been established by the Creator and endowed by him with its own proper laws. . . . God himself is the author of marriage.’A  The vocation to marriage is written in the very nature of man and woman as they came from the hand of the Creator.  Marriage is not a purely human institution despite the many variations it may have undergone through the centuries in different cultures, social structures, and spiritual attitudes.  These differences should not cause us to forget its common and permanent characteristics. Although the dignity of this institution is not transparent everywhere with the same clarity,B some sense of the greatness of the matrimonial union exists in all cultures.  ‘The well-being of the individual person and of both human and Christian society is closely bound up with the healthy state of conjugal and family life.’”

A ,B– From the papal encyclical, “Gaudium at spes,” (“Joy and Hope”) section 48 paragraph 1 and section 47 paragraph 2 respectively, published 12/7/1965.

(Paragraph 1603 from the Catechism of the Catholic Church, second edition; Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 25th printing, November 2013.)

7 – “Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception.  From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person – among which is the inviolable right of every innocent being to life… Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion.  This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable… The inalienable right to life of every innocent human individual is a constitutive element of a civil society and its legislation…” Excerpts from Paragraphs 2270, 2271 and 2271, Ibid.

8https://cartaremi.wordpress.com/2016/08/31/jeremiah-was-criticized-for-speaking-truth-of-bad-state-of-affairs-trump-knows-how-he-felt/

9https://cartaremi.wordpress.com/2016/04/25/why-a-national-15-hour-minimum-wage-makes-no-sense/

Jeremiah Was Criticized for Speaking Truth of Bad State of Affairs — Trump Knows How He Felt

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Two weeks ago, the 20th Sunday in ordinary time for the Catholic liturgical year, the first half of the first reading was taken from Jeremiah 38:4-6 as follows:

In those days, the princes said to the king:
“Jeremiah ought to be put to death;
he is demoralizing the soldiers who are left in this city,
and all the people, by speaking such things to them;
he is not interested in the welfare of our people,
but in their ruin.”
King Zedekiah answered: “He is in your power”;
for the king could do nothing with them.
And so they took Jeremiah
and threw him into the cistern of Prince Malchiah,
which was in the quarters of the guard,
letting him down with ropes.
There was no water in the cistern, only mud,
and Jeremiah sank into the mud.1

The rest of the reading included the part of how the king was approached and he relented to having Jeremiah pulled from the cistern.  The reason Jeremiah acquired so many enemies was what he said:

“Thus says the LORD: He who remains in this city shall die by sword, or famine, or pestilence; but he who goes out to the Chaldeans shall live; his life shall be spared him as booty, and he shall live.  Thus says the LORD: This city shall certainly be handed over to the army of the king of Babylon; he shall capture it.”2

CLAIMS  of  TRUMP’S  DETRACTORS

Jeremiah’s was not being sentenced for lying, but for telling the truth of their dire situation which many did not want to hear.  This is the same response Donald trump is receiving, with examples such as:

  • Tony Fratto, a former top Republican official in the administration of George W Bush, said the speech was the “darkest, most negative acceptance speech of a major party” that he had heard in his lifetime.3

 

  • Bloombergwent even further: “Donald Trump completed his hostile takeover of the Republican Party on Thursday with one of the most ominous speeches of his campaignshowing his already dystopian view of America has darkened considerably since he first announced his campaign.3
  • “Tonight, Donald Trump painted a dark picture of an America in decline. And his answer – more fear, more division, more anger, more hate — was yet another reminder that he is temperamentally unfit and totally unqualified to be President of the United States,” campaign chairman John Podesta said in a statement shortly after Trump wrapped his lengthy address.3

 

  • “Donald Trump gambled that Americans share his vision of a nation teetering on oblivion, casting himself as a renegade outsider who is the last, best hope to stand up to a discredited and depleted establishment.”4

But  the  Facts  ARE  Dismal

Let’s examine some of our nation’s problems to see if Trump is exaggerating that if we don’t change our ways, dire consequences will be ours.

A)  FEDERAL  DEBT:  At the end of the fiscal year 2000-2001 (9/30/2000), the federal debt was not quite $5.7 trillion dollars.  As George W. Bush took office four months later, we’ll consider this to be his starting point.  By 9/30/2008, or four months before he left office, the debt had grown to $10.0 trillion.Senator Obama, running for President, said this increase was “unpatriotic.”6

Interesting, as of 9/30/2015, the debt was $18.1 trillion4 and as has passed $19 trillion this year – even with some of the lowest interest rates ever.  As a percentage of Gross Domestic Product, it’s even scarier:

Federal Debet as % of GDP7

Political battles aside, here is the true outlook: “Assuming that the economy was operating at its full potential, the researchers estimated the sustainable upper limit of the debt-to-GDP ratio is around 93 percent. ‘A higher debt to GDP ratio is unsustainable and will drive the economy into a succession of lower growth periods accompanied by increased unemployment,’ they concluded.”8

So, Trump isn’t exaggerating here.

B)  WORKER PARTICIPATION RATE:  Although the unemployment rate has been cut in half since Obama took office, it has been known for a long time that this statistic means little as the demographics of our nation have changed since this number started being calculated.  When originally instituted, the unemployment rate was fairly accurate as the unemployed generally continued looking for jobs.  As the decades passed, this is no longer the case.

 The U.S. had a worker participation rate reached a low of 62.4% last September before rebounding slightly, and that was the lowest since 1977.  Retirements cannot account for a significant part of this.9

 Looks like Trump is painting an accurate picture here.

C)  HOME OWNERSHIP:  “High levels of student loan debt, tight mortgage underwriting standards and overheating home prices are all contributing to very low homeownership rates among the nation’s youngest workers.  Homeownership among those aged 25-34 today is nearly 10 percentage points lower than it was a decade ago… Some of this is a long-term shift toward marrying and having children later in life. Some of this is that the recovery has been slow among young adults.”10

 Undue pessimism by Trump?  No.

D)  CHILDREN in  SINGLE-PARENT  FAMILIES:  Crucial point to be made first.  The initial reaction to “children born out of wedlock” should be one of thanks for the parent(s) having chosen life.  Then the second thought  is that the breakdown of the family, the basic unit of a civilized society, is accelerating.  As the data shows:

 Since 1970, out-of-wedlock birth rates have soared. In 1965, 24 percent of black infants and 3.1 percent of white infants were born to single mothers. By 1990 the rates had risen to 64 percent for black infants, 18 percent for whites.”11

Here is more recent data:

Percentage of Births to Unmarried Women12

But, why should this be a concern?

“The family is the original cell of social life.  It is the natural society in which husband and wife are called to give themselves in love and in the gift of life.  Authority, stability, and a life of relationships within the family constitute the foundations for freedom, security, and fraternity within society… The importance of the family for the life and well-being of society entails a particular responsibility for society to support and strengthen marriage and the family.13

 BUT  MUCH  FEDERAL  ASSISTANCE  DISCOURAGES  FORMING  of  FAMILIES

“The marriage penalties that are embedded in welfare programs can be particularly severe if a woman on public assistance weds a man who is employed in a low-paying job. As a FamilyScholars.org report puts it: ‘When a couple’s income nears the limits prescribed by Medicaid, a few extra dollars in income cause thousands of dollars in benefits to be lost.  What all of this means is that the two most important routes out of poverty—marriage and work—are heavily taxed under the current U.S. system.’”

“William Galston, who served in the ’90s as Deputy Assistant to the President for Domestic Affairs, estimated that the welfare system, with its economic disincentives to marriage, was responsible for at least 15% to 20% of the family disintegration in the United States. Libertarian scholar Charles Murray has placed the figure at somewhere around 50%.”14

 Has Trump been unnecessarily negative here?  No way.

E)  MILITARY PREPAREDNESS:

“Top Army and Marine Corps generals warned lawmakers their combat readiness is ebbing and expressed concern they would be unable to fight and win another war in the midst of budget cuts, two wars and heightened global threats…”

“Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley said the Army can meet regional combatant command requirements and do counterterrorism and counterinsurgency missions. But the four-star had “grave concerns” that fighting a “higher-end” foe, such as China, Russia, Iran and North Korea, risks failure…”

“When we talk about risk, we’re talking about great-power war with one or two countries: China, Russia, Iran and North Korea.”“We can collectively roll the dice and say those days will never come and that’s a course of action; that is not a course of action I would advise,” Milley said. “There is a high level of risk associated with those contingencies right now…”

“According to a committee aide, [Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry, R-Texas] Thornberry is mulling further action on the issue and sees it as linked to maintenance and training shortfalls. ‘The combination of war fighters who aren’t trained and equipment that doesn’t work is a perfect storm,’ the aide said.”15

No, Donald Trump is not being overly negative, just reminding us of things those accountable don’t want the voters to believe.

 

1http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/081416.cfm

2 – Jeremiah 38:2-3.  From The New Catholic Answer Bible, Fireside Catholic Publishing; Wichita, Kansas, 2005.

3 – “Trump Accused Of “Apocalyptic” Fearmongering In Speech Promising “Security And Prosperity,” by Tyler Durden, http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-07-22/trump-accused-apocalyptic-fearmongering-speech-promising-security-and-prosperity, 7/22/2016.

4 – “Trump Paints Dark Portrait of Fading Nation Only He Can Save,” by Justin Sink, John McCormick and Mark Niquette, http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2016-07-21/trump-goes-on-cruz-control-with-speech-that-could-transform-race, 7/21/2016.

5 – Data from https://www.treasurydirect.gov/govt/reports/pd/histdebt/histdebt_histo5.htm

6 – “The problem is, is that the way Bush has done it over the last eight years is to take out a credit card from the Bank of China in the name of our children, driving up our national debt from $5 trillion for the first 42 presidents – #43 added $4 trillion by his lonesome, so that we now have over $9 trillion of debt that we are going to have to pay back — $30,000 for every man, woman and child. That’s irresponsible. It’s unpatriotic.”  From “Flashback: Obama Talks ‘Unpatriotic’ Debt In 2008, http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2013/03/13/flashback_obama_talks_unpatriotic_debt_in_2008.html

7 – ”Only Yesterday – How the Federal Debt Went From $1 Trillion To $18 Trillion In 33 Years,” by David Stockman, http://davidstockmanscontracorner.com/only-yesterday-how-the-federal-debt-went-from-1-trillion-to-18-trillion-in-33-years/, 12/5/2014.

8 – From “The Morning After America’s Debt Binge,” by Ronald Bailey, http://reason.com/archives/2013/10/11/the-morning-after-americas-debt-binge, 10/11/2013.

9 – “Record 94,708,000 Americans Not in Labor Force; Participation Rate Drops in May,”  by Susan Jones, http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/susan-jones/record-94708000-americans-not-labor-force-participation-rate-drops, 6/3/2016.

10 – Homeownership near its lowest in history,” by Diana Olick, , http://www.cnbc.com/2016/04/28/homeownership-near-its-lowest-in-history.html, 4/28/2016.

11 – “An Analysis of Out-Of-Wedlock Births in the United States,” by George A. Akerlof and Janet L. Yellen, https://www.brookings.edu/research/an-analysis-of-out-of-wedlock-births-in-the-united-states/, 8/1/1996.

12http://www.childtrends.org/?indicators=births-to-unmarried-women

13 – Parts of paragraphs 2207 and 2210 from the Catechism of the Catholic Church, second edition, Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 25th printing; November 2013.

14 – “How the Liberal Welfare State Destroyed Black America,” by John Perazzo, http://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/262726/how-liberal-welfare-state-destroyed-black-america-john-perazzo, 5/6/2016.

15 – “Generals Worry Army, Marines Unready For A New War,” by Joe Gould, http://www.defensenews.com/story/defense/2016/03/16/army-marines-readiness-war-congress/81876210/, 3/16/2016.

Why is U.S. Influence Weakening in Asia? Should We Care?

Daniel Henninger, Deputy Editorial Page Director for the Wall Street Journal, appeared on Fox News this morning to discuss his recent editorial “Time for a Big-League President.”1  In it, he wrote about the world’s political climate and declared that “Only one thing really matters in an unsettled world: the quality of U.S. leadership.”

In today’s television interview, he commented on China’s increased assertiveness against Japan and other countries in the Far East.  Meanwhile, the U.S. seems to have disappeared from Asia.  In response to an unprecedented need, the State Department has tried to reassure our allies that we have not, in fact, abandoned them.

The question is: “Why has the Administration pulled back from opportunities to “keep the peace” in Asia?

Isolationism  and  Presidential  Resources

Mr. Henninger believes it stems from the fact that “polls say Americans are in an isolationist mood.”  He continued with “Mr. Obama won’t spend political capital outside the country—Ukraine, Syria, Asia. He wants to spend what capital he has left consolidating internal federal authority.”1

These observations are accurate.  A majority of the American public, or at least the Baby Boomers and perhaps some of Generation X, have had an extended, subconscious guilt over the Viet Nam years.  For the last four decades, there has been a persistent reluctance to become involved in major disputes outside our borders, reminiscent of our pre-1917 era before we were pulled into World War I.2

Advancing  Socialism  and  Increasing  Federal  Debt

There are two other reasons for our lack of effort in preventing Asia from becoming another hot spot in the world.  The first is the President Obama’s obvious preference for socialism.  Despite laughter from the left and disbelief from the uninformed center of the political spectrum, there is abundant evidence.

Obamacare is just a recent example.  The President’s signature piece of legislation may or may not work.  It seems unimportant to his ultimate goal.  If it succeeds, then it becomes part of a more orderly move toward socialized medicine.  If it fails, then by recognizing the reality that we rarely retrace our steps away from entitlements, it will fast-forward us to socialized medicine.  And as Dr. Benjamin Carson has reminded us, Lenin said that “socialized medicine is the keystone to a socialized state.”

Another tactic on the part of the President is the “Common Core” (or “Obamacore”) standards for education.  It’s a bold move to take control of education from the states and to concentrate it more in the federal government.  It also strives to make students “worker-ready” at the expense of being “informed voter-ready.”

Lastly, but certainly not least, is our federal debt.  It’s not only at a very unhealthy level, but is made even worse by the amount of Treasury securities held by other countries.  At the end of October, 2013, China owned $1.3045 trillion, which was 7.6% of our total debt and up from 7.2% twelve months earlier.3  If this were the stock market, China would be required to make a bid to own the U.S.   As it is, they hold a disturbingly high percentage of our Treasury securities; thus, adding credibility to the idea that the Administration doesn’t want to ruffle their feathers.

Wrap-Up

The abdication of our influence in Asia is just one of several injuries to our ability in being a force for good in the world.  The current Administration is more concerned with the long-term dependency of the citizenry.  We voters must remember that the world is way too small for us to think that if we just keep to ourselves, become preoccupied with “American” problems only, then everything will be fine.

I cannot improve on Mr. Henninger’s concluding statement: “Barack Obama has proven that rookie leaders won’t work in the world we’ve got now. If the U.S. wants to remain a big-league nation, it’s going to have to elect a big-league president.”

1 – 1/1/2014 at www.online.wsj.com

2 – Mr. Henninger also wrote in that article: “It is no surprise that in conversations of late one hears invocations of the 1930s. Or that a popular book to give this season has been Margaret MacMillan’s ‘The War That Ended Peace: The Road to 1914.’ Whether the world in 2014 will tip from containment to chaos or war is not the subject here.”  Nor is it for this posting, either, but it’s certainly worth thinking about as we head toward the mid-term elections ten months away.

3 – While China’s additional investments in Treasury securities slowed from April to October of 2013, their 12-month net purchases showed an increase of $134 billion while all other foreign owned debt decreased slightly.   Data is from www.treasury.gov

Why All of the Fuss About “Sequestration” and Losing Some Border Patrol and TSA Agents?

Like her boss in the White House, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano has been expressing theatrical concern over the possible effects which “Sequestration” will have should Congress and the President not agree on a budget by the end of the week.

True, there will be across the board “cuts” (or more accurately, decreases in federal spending increases as Fox News and the WordPress blog “Quiner’s Diner” have been reminding us).  But the worry about it damaging our national interests and security is particularly humorous in view of what has been happening for some time.  Losing some border patrol and TSA agents is miniscule compared to the internal destruction going on right now with the approval of 50.7% of the voters last November 6.  (It might actually be beneficial to the border patrollers – being displaced means they’ll stand less of a chance of being killed with our guns in the hands of foreign drug criminals.)

For the 50.7% (including, sadly, many of my fellow “Catholics”), let me remind them of the modern version of the Fall of the Roman Empire unfolding in front of us (the order of this list does not necessarily indicate priority):

1)  $16 trillion in debt, 48% owned by foreign governments and individuals.As of last June, China owned ¼ of our foreign owned debt.Two huge problems here.  Climbing debt slowly strangles our government’s ability to deal with anything except servicing the debt, not to mention weakening the dollar.  And, do we really want an ideological opposite like China to have this level of power over us?  (Well, maybe not such an ideological opposite as we’ll see in the following items.)

2)  Disregard for the dignity of human life.  (This should be first, as all other rights are in danger when this one is ignored.)  “Choice” and “reproductive rights” are the morbid euphemisms resulting from a terribly flawed Supreme Court decision forty years ago.  Oh well, Obama and his followers don’t need to worry.  Those 55 million murdered can never vote against them.  Incidentally, an ardent Obama supporter, George Soros, contributed to the development of the abortifacient “RU-486”and its use.3,4

3)   Major contributors to the President’s political party who are opposed to our nation’s survival.  Not true?  Well, back to George Soros again, one of the masterminds pushing for Democratic election victories since 2003.  Soros commented that “Some global system of political decision-making” in which “the sovereignty of states must be subordinated to international law and international institutions” when “collective interests” are at stake.5  Also, “[Soros] argued that a vision of ‘open society idealism’ must supersede traditional state sovereignty if globalization is to benefit all.”6

4)  Doing away with the basic unit of civilized society, the family, by attacking the sanctity of marriage.  OK, so you don’t believe in the Ten Commandments, then I hope there is some acknowledgement of Natural Law.  Men and women are different physically for a reason.  (surprise!)  Same gender sexual activity must be condemned because it is intrinsically disordered.  We are morally bound to afford those afflicted the same care and consideration as we do for anyone else experiencing disordered tendencies such as gambling addiction, alcoholism, heterosexual addiction, pedophilia, greed for power and money, etc.7
Marriage was not invented by the Church or the state.  Neither of these institutions has the authority to redefine it.  Legitimizing same sex “marriage” has ripple effects which disrupt the structure of the family.

5)  Making it so that citizens are dependent on Big Brother for everything.  Food stamp recipients increased by about 47% or 15 million during Obama’s first term.

Laws using distorted definitions of “discrimination” and “equality” are threatening the major areas of non-governmental social programs and agencies.  Religious organizations, many of which are Catholic, are finding that they are running afoul of creative laws which declare them to be discriminatory.  Catholic adoption agencies have closed because they cannot accept same-sex couples as appropriate guardians because of Natural Law and core beliefs.  The very existence of religious schools, hospitals and social organizations is threatened because they will not deny deeply held faith beliefs in order to be compliant with government directives such as the HHS mandate.

6)  Essentially suspend freedom of religion, an inalienable right, by limiting its practice to church buildings.  Not only are there dangers such as the HHS mandate, but we also have, “Lawsuits a plenty against religious freedom and expression in the land of the free. Christianity in the U.S. is under attack as it was during the early period of the Soviet Union when religious symbols were against the law.”8

7)   A federal government so insecure that it touts the crimes of a few, criminally insane as justification to work toward disarming the citizenry.  You and I are such a threat to their vast teams of undercover, armed agents and military might?  This warrants therapy for us, but they’d better hurry before all Catholic Social Services are out of business!

8)   Increasing invasions of privacy under the guise of “protecting” us.  Cameras everywhere.  Drones at Obama’s disposal.  New cars in 2014 required to have “little black boxes” to record vehicle operations data similar to that of 600 mph jets.  Chip implants, just for “high security workers” now, but eventually for “medical records” followed by “etc.”

And we’re supposed to lose sleep because Janet Napolitano’s budget will be affected if Congress doesn’t give in to an executive-order happy President? 


1
– Kimberly Amadeo, www.About.com, 1/8/2013
2 – Ibid., 9/5/2012
3 – Rachel Zimmerman. “Choice Allies: Awaiting Green Light, Abortion-Pill Venture Keeps to the Shadows,” The Wall Street Journal, 9/5/2000, reference posted in www.churchmilitant.tv
4 – “Contributed $1 Million To Planned Parenthood For “Outreach, Education and Training” Relating To RU-486,” Marc Kaufman, ”Abortion Pill Deliveries Begin Soon,” The Washington Post, 11/16/2000, also in www.churchmilitant.tv
5 — Matthew Rees, “Saving Capitalism From Soros,” The Ottawa Citizen, 12/9/1998, in www.churchmilitant.tv
6 — Carlin Romano, “George Soros Offers A Plan To Help Poor Via Globalization,” The Philadelphia Inquirer, 3/24/2002, also in www.churchmilitant.tv
7 – “The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible.  They do not choose their homosexual condition: for most of them it is a trial [blog author’s note: “trial” as in a “tribulation,” not trial as an experiment].  They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided.  These persons are called to fulfill God’s Will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.”
“Homosexual persons are called to chastity.  [blog author’s note:  just as any man and woman not married to each other are called]  By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested [note: meaning not self-serving] friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection” (paragraphs 2358 and 2359 of the “Catechism of the Catholic Church,” Liguori Publications, Liguori, MO, 1994)
8 — Xavier Lerma, pravda,ru web site, 11/19/2012, posted in the article “Fiscal Cliff: Obama Poised to Win Either Way, U.S. Loses Either Way,” on www.CartaRemi.wordpress.com, 12/29/2012

FISCAL CLIFF: OBAMUNISM POISED TO WIN EITHER WAY, U.S. LOSES EITHER WAY

The debate on whether President Obama is truly a communist or merely acts like one will probably make the rounds up until his wife begins to run for the presidency – four long and potentially devastating years from now.  (Michelle Obama cannot be discounted.  After all, she is a lawyer – the most popular occupation of Democratic presidential candidates and its movers-and-shakers over the last thirty years.  It was her insider’s knowledge and connections which helped launch an otherwise nondescript Barack Obama into the political forefront in Chicago.)  Whether one believes Xavier Lerma:  “He is a Communist without question promoting the Communist Manifesto without calling it so.  How shrewd he is in America. His cult of personality mesmerizes those who cannot go beyond their ignorance.  They will continue to follow him like those fools who still praise Lenin and Stalin in Russia. Obama’s fools and Stalin’s fools share the same drink of illusion,” 1 or Sam Webb, national chairperson of the CPUSA:  “We meet on the heels of an enormous people’s victory.  It was a long and bitterly contested battle in which the forces of inclusive democracy came out on top. The better angels of the American people spread their wings,”2 the issue can be settled simply by observing the President’s actions.

THE  “SAVIOR”  AND  OBAMA-AYERS  CONNECTION

A totalitarian state comes to power either by force or when a citizenry willingly submits itself to what it believes to be its only hope, its “lord and savior” as we have already heard Jamie Foxx say of Obama.   (Force was the modus operandi of William Ayers and his cronies when they published “Prairie Fire – The Politics of Anti-Revolutionary Imperialism” in 1974, but they have adjusted their tactics probably due to the complexity of the U.S. which relegates force to an “end game” if necessary.  Incidentally, the book was dedicated to numerous individuals, including Sirhan Sirhan, Robert Kennedy’s assassin.)

Despite Obama’s attempts to minimize his connection to Ayers, there are numerous examples of Obama-Ayers interactions in the public.  They include:

1)  Collaboration on a school reform program, the “Chicago Annenberg Challenge”
2)  Serving together on the board of the Woods Fund, a charity organization
3)  Being on a panel about juvenile justice (organized by Michelle Obama) and others3

THE  ASCENT  TO  OVERTAKING  A  NATION

Therefore, how does an aspiring despot arrive to his lofty position?  There must be a seemingly endless flow of crises.  Or as taken from “Prairie Fire:”

“Our intention is to disrupt the empire, to incapacitate it, to put pressure on the cracks, to make it hard to carry out its bloody functioning against the people of the world, to join the world struggle, to attack from the inside.”
“Our intention is to engage the enemy, to wear away at him, to harass him, to isolate him, to expose every weakness, to pounce, to reveal his vulnerability.” 3

When a godless society feels overwhelmed, the people begin grasping for any promise of help, regardless of its insanity.  Or as Lerma added about the success of Obama in a crisis,“His cult of personality mesmerizes those who cannot go beyond their ignorance.”1

DEMISE  BEGINS  WITH  THE  ECONOMY,  PLUS  CLEVER  PR

This is not to accuse Obama of creating all of the serious problems facing us.  Far from it.  He deftly diffused outspoken New Jersey Republican Governor Christie with his now infamous arm-around-the-shoulder after the destruction of Superstorm Sandy.

In addition, Obama has shown a remarkable ability to aggravate any crisis in the bud.  Take the federal debt.  It was already doing poorly when he took office in 2009.  Federal budgets were going out of control so, instead of carefully maneuvering the economy, as a Formula I driver would around dangers, he simply floored it to a new total of $16 trillion.  His “fiscal cliff” pseudo-negotiations have demanded a year of “no debt ceiling” then, maybe, he would discuss spending cuts.  At this point, the “promise” of discussing his small cuts at such a late date should conjure up an image of Wile E. Coyote desperately jerking the steering wheel as he plunges earthward.  If only our problems could be fixed in the next frame like a cartoon.

IGNORANCE  IS  BLISS  UNTIL …

But yet, how could we possibly accept this budgetary situation so unwittingly?  Even Putin and the former Soviet Union figured it out.  As he was quoted, “During the time of the Soviet Union the role of the state in economy was made absolute, which eventually lead to the total non-competitiveness of the economy. That lesson cost us very dearly. I am sure no one would want history to repeat itself.”1

Lerma’s article went on to say, “President Vladimir Putin could never have imagined anyone so ignorant or so willing to destroy their people like Obama much less seeing millions vote for someone like Obama. They read history in America don’t they? Alas, the schools in the U.S. were conquered by the Communists long ago and history was revised thus paving the way for their Communist presidents. Obama has bailed out those businesses that voted for him and increased the debt to over 16 trillion with an ever increasing unemployment rate especially among blacks and other minorities. All the while promoting his agenda.”1

PUT  RELIGION  IN  ITS  PLACE

”The red, white and blue still flies happily but only in Russia.  Russia still has St George defeating the Dragon with the symbol of the cross on its’ flag.  The ACLU and other atheist groups in America would never allow the US flag with such religious symbols. Lawsuits a plenty against religious freedom and expression in the land of the free. Christianity in the U.S. is under attack as it was during the early period of the Soviet Union when religious symbols were against the law.” 1

UNDERMINE  THE  BASIC  UNIT  OF  SOCIETY  (THE  FAMILY)

Contaminating a society with disordered behavior under the guise of “inclusiveness” or “equality” is also an effective disruptive tool.  Anyone aware of history knows that no society has ever flourished when the basic family unit was replaced with a variety of behaviors contrary to natural law.  Check out Sodom, Gomorrah and the Roman Empire.

As Pope Benedict XVI said in his annual “state of the Church” address at the Vatican, as reported by USA Today, that opposition to gay marriage is a way of defending humanity.  The article also said, “The address echoed his recently released annual peace message, which said gay marriage, abortion and euthanasia are threats to world peace.”4

Of course, the Pope and the Church do not refer to “gay marriage” as such because that euphemism would be legitimizing something which is intrinsically disordered.  The Pope’s actual translated statement was as follows: “Man and woman in their created state as complementary versions of what it means to be human are disputed. But if there is no pre-ordained duality of man and woman in creation, then neither is the family any longer a reality established by creation. Likewise, the child has lost the place he had occupied hitherto and the dignity pertaining to him. Bernheim shows that now, perforce, from being a subject of rights, the child has become an object to which people have a right and which they have a right to obtain. When the freedom to be creative becomes the freedom to create oneself, then necessarily the Maker himself is denied and ultimately man too is stripped of his dignity as a creature of God, as the image of God at the core of his being. The defence of the family is about man himself. And it becomes clear that when God is denied, human dignity also disappears. Whoever defends God is defending man.5

FINALLY,  WEAKEN  THE  MILITARY  TO  INEFFECTIVENESS

Now that we have a disintegrating financial situation and a society which is abandoning the family unit, what’s left to knock out and finalize collapse?  The military is a good place to start.  If the country falls over the “fiscal cliff,” major cuts will be made to the defense budget.  While not all of the crippling effects will be immediate, the erosion will be noticeable nonetheless.  Even worse, will be the impact on civilian companies who produce much of the military’s advanced weaponry.  As contracts decrease, many firms will not be able to remain solvent. Lose sophisticated manufacturers, and one cannot simply flip a switch to revive them when the mistake is realized.

Chairman Obama wins one way or another:  either he gets absurd liberties with the debt ceiling with no commitment to curb the spending which is devouring our nation or the military takes a hit.

POLLS  GIVE  OBAMA  CONFIDENCE

The President is also a master of public opinion.  Despite his obvious lifetime connection to ideologies opposing the vitality of a United States republic, he continues to win the popularity measurements.  As Fox News reported yesterday, the most recent Gallup poll shows that Obama has a likeability rating in the 50s with regard to the “cliff” while Republicans in the House have been saddled with a rating in the 20.7  Its conclusion is that a majority of Americans will not blame the President for any damage caused by going over the “cliff.”

WHAT’S  NEXT?

As a nation, we missed the opportunity to do something constructive seven weeks ago.  Two options are left:

1)   Pray that all members of Congress accept the wisdom which God may grant them.  I will not be intimidated by the smirks of those who will label me as hopelessly outdated.  Washington and his troops had no earthly reason to expect victory, especially during the winter of Valley Forge.  After the incredible surge to victory for independence, he emphasized where our thanks were due.  As USA Today stated last month, “While a few modern critics might be rankled by, as Washington’s proclamation puts it, an official ‘day of public thanksgiving and prayer,’ for most Americans the holiday stands as an enduring reminder of Washington’s wise vision for American religious freedom.”8
The current spiritual winter is of our own making.  The God of today is the same as in the 18th century and always will be, even beyond time itself.  We are the ones who have changed.  Let’s give him a little thought because we cannot fix this by ourselves.

2)   Pray and work actively to charitably inform those who don’t know or seemingly don’t want to know the entire picture.  It would be an utter shame and disgrace for the Greatest Generation to be followed by the Worst Generation.

1 – Xavier Lerma, pravda,ru web site, 11/19/2012
2 – Sam Webb, national chairperson of the Communist Party USA, main report to its National Committee, 11/17/2012
3www.zombietime.com, 10/22/2008
4 – USA Today article in the Cincinnati Enquirer, 12/22/2012
5 – Vatican.va’s text of the Pope’s message, 12/21/2012
6– Fox News, television interview, aired 12/28/2012
7 – Jon Scott, Fox News, quoting Gallup, aired 12/28/2012
8www.principledpolicy.com, 11/24/2012