Monthly Archives: August 2016

OCCUPY DEMOCRATS, A LYING CORRUPT ORGANIZATION – PART FOUR

I know that I said Part Three of my series on the Occupy Democrats organization would be the last. Well, I guess I lied, and let’s face it, I’m not the only one who has lied. Seriously, though, this one dropped right into my lap and I couldn’t pass it up.

How Democrats can compare these incidents to Benghazi is not understandable.

In my newsfeed on Facebook, another Meme from Occupy Democrats appeared listing the U.S. Embassy attacks which took place while George W. Bush was president, and stating that there were zero investigations by Republicans, and zero fake outrage on Fox News. The meme was titled, “Bush’s Benghazi.”

Attacks on embassies and consulates have always taken place, but what makes Benghazi different is not that the consulate itself was attacked, it’s the actions or rather lack of actions by the current president, the Secretary of State, and others when Ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens, notified the State Department that the consulate was under attack, and requested additional protection for himself and those working at the consulate. How that was handled, and the whereabouts of the current president and the Secretary of State during the attack was called into questioning. Also called into questioning, were the actions of the president and the Secretary of State, in efforts to avoid being scrutinized, attempted to blame the attacks on an anti-Muslim video.

The established facts and the outcome of the investigations into the Benghazi attacks are not the subject of this post. Rather, the subject of this post is the liberal spin, excuse me, liberal lies regarding other embassy attacks.

The following are the embassy or consulate attacks that Occupy Democrats consider comparable to Benghazi, but in reality, are no way related.

  • December 15, 2001: Unidentified assailants gunned down a Nepalese security guard of the U.S. Embassy in Kathmandu, Nepal.
  • March 20, 2002: A car bomb exploded near the U.S. Embassy in Lima, Peru, killing nine people and injuring 32. The U.S. State Department reported no American casualties, injuries, or damage.
  • June 14, 2002: A suicide bombing in front of the U.S. Consulate in Karachi, Pakistan, left 12 dead and 52 injured.
  • July, 30, 2004: Two people, including a suicide bomber, were killed and one person was injured as a suicide bomber set off an explosion at the U.S. Embassy in Tashkent, Uzbedistan. The Israeli Embassy and the Uzbedistan Prosecutor General’s Office in Tashkent were also attacked in related incidents.
  • October, 24, 2004: Edward Seitz, the assistant regional security officer at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq, died in a mortar of possible rocket attack at Camp Victory near the Baghdad airport. An American soldier was also injured. He was believed to be the first U.S. diplomat killed following the March 2003 U.S. led invasion.
  • December 7, 2004: Gunmen belonging to al-Qaida in the Arabian Pensinsula stormed the U.S. Consulate in Jedda, Saudi Arabia, triggering a bloody four-hour siege that left nine dead. One American was slightly injured in the assault.
  • September 12, 2006: Islamic militants attacked the U.S. embassy in Damascus, Syria with hand grenades, rifles, and a vehicle rigged with explo9sives. One guard and the four attackers died.
  • July 8, 2007: Two Iraqi U.S. Embassy workers were killed when the wife went to deliver a ransom for her husband who had been kidnapped in Baghdad. One of the couple’s bodyguards was killed in the filed ransoming.
  • July, 9, 2008: Four unknown gunmen killed three Turkish police at the U.S. consulate in Istanbul, Turkey.
  • September 17, 2008: Suspected al-Qaida militants disguised as security forces detonated vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices, fired rocket propelled grenades, rockets and firearms on the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa, Yemen. A suicide bomber also blew himself up at the embassy. Six Yemeni police, four civilians, including an American civilian, and six attackers were killed while six others were wounded in the attacked.
  • November 27, 2008: A Taliban suicide car bomber targeted the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing four civilians in addition to the suicide bomber and wounding 18 others. The embassy was hosting a Thanksgiving Day event as Americans and other foreigners were arriving at the venue at the time of the attack.

As any sane person should be able to ascertain, none of the above incidents are even similar to the events surrounding the Benghazi attacks. The fact that liberals could even make such a comparison, leaves me confused. But again, they are liberals. They don’t care about facts. Furthermore, they appear incapable of thinking thing through.

Their inability to think things through by liberals used to mystify me. But, long after trying to discern liberal logic, I just might be getting it. They think they’re so smart because they have the academicians in their corner. They’re not smart at all, though. Maybe those academicians can read a textbook, take a test on the subject matter of that textbook, and make an “A.” Maybe they can study subjects and teach those subjects to students where those students range from age six to sixty. They have total control over those students, and the protection from the real world in their brick and mortar classrooms where they are seldom challenged.

Of course, the liberal population is comprised of more than just academicians. Artists, including writers, painters, and musicians, are generally liberal leaning, as well as non-political government workers, plaintiffs’ trial lawyers, and union members.

Be that as it may, until liberals are able to differentiate the above from tragedies like Benghazi and have the liberal media on their side, meaningful dialog will never take place.

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OCCUPY DEMOCRATS, A LYING CORRUPT ORGANIZATION – PART THREE

According to politifact.com, Occupy Democrats is an advocacy group that was created to counterbalance the Tea Party and to give President Obama and other progressive Democrats a Congress that will work with them to grow the economy, create jobs, promote fairness, fight inequality, and get money out of politics. It sounds good, doesn’t it?

Occupy Democrats also has a Facebook page, and most of my liberal Facebook friends are fans of the page.

Of course, I often see posts where my liberal FB friends have shared memes from the Occupy Democrats Facebook page, and those memes are almost always wrong about everything. Here is another example.

On July 17, 2015, Occupy Democrats shared a meme on Facebook stating: “House Republicans just passed a bill that makes it legal for single mothers to be fired by their employers.”

House Republicans did not pass a bill. It was only introduced.

According to Politifact, the meme was shared more than 60,000 times, suggesting a lot of people found the news outrageous. Politifact determined through a cached image of Occupy Democrats’ website and a Huffington Post article that the meme’s underlying beef was with the First Amendment Defense Act, HR 2802, introduced by Republicans on June 17.  HR 2802 was a conservative response to the Supreme Court’s decision to legalize gay marriage.

At the time of the meme, the bill had not been passed by the GOP led House. Rather, it had only been submitted to a committee for consideration.

Some Americans saw the Supreme Court’s decision to legalize gay marriage as a potential affront to their religious beliefs under the First Amendment.

The authors of the First Amendment Defense Act attempted to address how the court’s decision could affect religious institutions in a situation that came up during oral arguments. Justice Samuel Alito asked in April whether a religious school could lose its tax-exempt status if it opposes same-sex marriage, and the U.S. solicitor general, who was arguing for same-sex couples said, “It’s certainly going to be an issue.”

The First Amendment Defense Act mentions this exchange in its text and proposes that it should be illegal for the federal government to impose tax, grant or benefit sanctions on organizations that oppose same-sex marriage because of religious or moral convictions.

Since the bill does not mention women at all, where does the concern for single moms losing their jobs come into play?

Politifact goes on to indicated that the part which worries some people is section 3(a), which reads: “Notwithstanding any other provisions of law, the Federal Government shall not take any discriminatory action against a person wholly or partially on the basis that such person believes or acts in accordance with a religious belief of moral conviction that marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman, or that sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage.”

Emily Martin, vice president and general counsel of the National Women’s Law Center, pointed to the last part about sexual relations being reserved for the marriage of one man and one woman. The wording “can absolutely” be applied to women who are pregnant outside of marriage, she said.

The introductory clause “notwithstanding any other provision of law,” Martin said, seems to indicate that FADA would overrule other existing laws on this issue.

Usually, when an individual feels that she has been discriminated against, she has to file a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The agency would then investigate the concern and give a ruling or provide the complainant with a “right to sue.”

However, Martin argued that, in an extreme scenario, it’s possible the EEOC would not have jurisdiction in cases under this bill since the FADA specifically forbids the federal government from taking discriminatory actions against a person.

Samuel Estreicher, director of the Center for Labor and Employment Law at New York University’s Law School, says he would not read the bill as repealing Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (which protects against sex discrimination). Still, he said it could use some clarification.

The bill’s primary sponsors in the Senate and the House say the bill is not supposed to target single mothers. In a phone interview, Representative Raul Labrador (R) from Idaho, said the First Amendment Defense Act deals exclusively with possible federal government actions against employers that do no support same-sex marriage. The Federal government would not be able to use tax or other federal sanctions, such as withdrawing benefits or tax-exempt status, against employers who oppose same-sex marriage. The federal government would not be able to use tax or other federal sanctions, such as withdrawing benefits or tax-exempt status, against employers who oppose same-sex marriage.

Labrador also said that the bill does not address employer-employee relationships, and if an employee felt that she was discriminated against, she would still be able to seek recourse through employment protections through the EEOC or Title VII. Labrador then indicated that he would make the bill clearer.

Politifact indicated that it did reach out to Occupy Democrats, but did not hear back.

In their conclusion, Politifact indicated that there were big flaws with this claim. According to some quick googling, the bill has never gotten out of committee. Thus, stating that House Republicans just passed a bill… is a lie. Furthermore, the bill does not legalize the firing of single mothers. Instead, it deals with discriminatory actions that the federal government should take against religious institutions that oppose same sex marriage. Politifact rates the claim as false.

To this conservative political blogger, this claim is more than false, it is ridiculous. I can’t really connect the dots. Furthermore, in most states, an employer can fire an employee for any reason or no reason at all. When you sign on as an employee, the contract that you sign indicates that both the employee and the employer have a right to terminate the contract.

Having said the above, even though the employer doesn’t have to give the employee a reason for termination, such an action is rare. Companies that did this often would get an unwanted reputation.

Note: This will be the last post in my series illustrating the lies, half-truths, and out of context statements often made by Occupy Democrats. However, I will continue to monitor this site and may report on them in the future.

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BILES AND DOUGLAS NOT FIRST BLACK GYMNASTS

I’m seeing a lot of posts and feeds on FB regarding this year’s Olympics, most of which, I don’t like. And many folks share my views.

If I didn’t know better, I’d think this was the first time that black athletes were allowed to participate in the Olympics, or even the first time blacks were able to participate in sports.

Probably the best gymnast I’ve ever watched is Olympic champion Simone Biles. I can safely say this because I follow one of the great gymnastics’ dynasties, the University of Alabama Gymtide. The posts on FB page, “Because of them we can by Enrique Jones” have particularly gotten on my nerves. The posts from this page and other posts would have you think that Simone Biles and Gabby Douglas were the first black gymnasts to ever compete for honors, and that their efforts are paving the way for the next round of black gymnasts.

SimoneBiles

Long before I started my Alabama sports website, I was following Alabama Gymnastics. The Tide won its first national title in 1988. Since then, the Gymtide has won national titles in 1991, 1996, 2002, 2011, and 2012. Many of the gymnasts on the Alabama  teams were black. Through research, I was able to obtain the names of the black women that participated from 2008 forward: Morgan Dennis, Ashley O’Neal, Ashley Sledge, Hunter Dennis, Diandra Milliner, Carley Sims, Katie Bentley, Aja Sims, Kayla Williams, and Kiana Winston. Unfortunately, prior to 2008, I wasn’t able to obtain any names, but do recall Dee Dee Foster, Andrea Pickens, and Ashley Miles. There were more, but I just don’t remember their names. In addition to excelling on the vault, the bars, the beam, and the floor, these gymnasts, along with their teammates excelled in the class room as well. Most of them had GPA’s of 3.0 or better.

Another post that appeared on my news feed showed a picture of the U.S. Olympic Gymnastics team and commented on the diversity of the ladies (two are black, one is Jewish, one is Hispanic, and I think the other is white/Christian). The post read as follows: “This, this is the America that’s on her way, just around the corner. Black, Hispanic, white, Jewish…confident not in spite of her diversity, but because of it.” This poster says to me that America is new to this diversity and inclusion game, but, we’re just about ready to turn the corner. You would think this was 1970 instead of the second decade of the 21st century and a generation after Civil Rights and the Women’s Movements.

So much progress has been made by “other than white males” since the barriers were lifted, but it seems that the left is trying to brainwash us into thinking we’re no better off than we were prior to 1964. That’s and I will call it out when I see it. To imply that America is about ready to turn the corner is wrong. We turned that corner long ago. In 2008, the United States elected its first black president, then re-elected him in 2012. With only 13% of the American population being black, Barak Obama had to have a substantial number of white votes to get elected. Not only have we turned the corner, but we continue to run round and round the block. Is there room for improvement and room to grow? Absolutely! Will we ever be a nation without racism or prejudice? No, because this world will never be a perfect one. We have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, and will continue to do so until that one fine day when Jesus returns  and sets up his 1000 year kingdom on earth.

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OCCUPY DEMOCRATS, A LYING CORRUPT ORGANIZATION – PART TWO

According to politifact.com, Occupy Democrats is an advocacy group that was created to counterbalance the Tea Party and to give President Obama and other progressive Democrats a Congress that will work with them to grow the economy, create jobs, promote fairness, fight inequality, and get money out of politics. Occupy Democrats also has a Facebook page, and most of my liberal Facebook friends are fans of the page. It sounds good, doesn’t it?

Of course, I often see posts where my liberal FB friends have shared memes from the Occupy Democrats Facebook page, and those memes are almost always wrong about everything. Here is another example, and there will be several more to come over the next few days.

According to politifact.com, during the last four presidencies, deficits disappeared under one Democrat (Bill Clinton), went up under two Republicans (George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush) and traveled both up and down under one Democrat (Barak Obama). It’s actually a complicated story, but Occupy Democrats boiled it down into one graphic with five short lines.

  • Bush Sr. handed Clinton a $269 billion budget deficit.
  • Clinton handed Bush, Jr. a $127.3 billion surplus.
  • Bush Jr. Handed Obama a $1.4 trillion deficit.
  • But tell me again which is the party of fiscal responsibility?

Politifact asked the group’s founder and editor-in-chief, Omar Rivero to explain his numbers, and he offered a small correction. Rivero said that the number for the first President Bush should be a deficit of $255 billion or $14 billion less than stated. “A tiny error, really,” Rivero said. “We stand firmly by our meme and its implication that Democrats are better stewards of the debt.”

For this particular instance, Politifact focused on the claim that Bush, Jr. handed Obama a $1.4 billion deficit and Obama reduced Bush, Jr.’s deficit to just $492 billion.

Rivero said he picked the first year of a new president’s first term and relied on data from the White House Office of Management and Budget. Politifact used figures from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, which runs an interactive database for this figure for the Federal Reserve, but the two were largely the same. Then they color coded the four presidencies and marked the years Rivero picked in red.

Politico indicated that in terms of reducing the deficit, Obama did a little better than the meme said. However, the federal fiscal year begins in October. A new president takes office in January and for the most part, typically operates under the budget he inherited. Thus, it’s reasonable to use the years that Rivero picked. But there’s a lot more to it than that.

2009: Not your typical year:

The great recession hit hard in 2008 and grew worse in 2009. In that period, the unemployment rate doubled from about 5% to 10%. With Democrats in charge of both houses of Congress and the White House, Washington passed a stimulus package that cost nearly $190 billion, according to the Congressional Budget Office. That included over $100 billion in new spending and a somewhat smaller amount in tax cuts, about $79 billion in fiscal year 2009.

George W. Bush was not in office when those measures passed. So a more accurate number for the deficit he passed on might be closer to $1.2 trillion.

But Steve Ellis, vice president of Taxpayers for Common Sense, a group concerned by rising deficits, told PunditFact that the budget numbers don’t tell you much. It’s very difficult to untangle responsibility during those years.

In fiscal year 2009, you didn’t just have the stimulus, according to Ellis. Many of the fiscal decisions at the end of the Bush presidency were don’t in consultation with the president-elect, such as the Detroit auto bailout. Even with TARP, both campaigns were consulted.

Ellis is wary of what he calls snapshot comparisons because he doesn’t think they are fair to either president stepping down or the one taking over. They ignore too much context. Ellis noted that before deficits plummeted under Obama, they remained quite high. The Occupy Democrats post brushed past that fiscal reality.

The debt has increased more under President Obama so far than it did in the entirety of President Bush’s eight years, according to Ellis (and we all know that). Mr. Ellis also indicates that he doesn’t think that’s an accurate measure either, but it tells a different tale. Ellis feels that since Congress is really responsible for the budget, it’s always a little strange to blame the president for it.

Ellis noted that about two-thirds of all spending is mandatory, in the form of programs such as Social Security and Medicare. That said, according to the CBO, policy changes under George W. Bush, including tax cuts, the Iraq War, the Medicare prescription drug benefit, and agricultural subsidies, greatly increased the deficits.

While Occupy Democrats said that George W. Bush handed Obama a $1.4 trillion deficit and Obama reduced Bush’s deficit to just $492 billion, the post picked certain years to back that up, and for those years, its numbers were accurate.

However, many factors complicate this simple-Simon picture. Bush did push policies that drove up the deficits, the federal response to the great recession was to some extent shared by Bush and Obama. While deficits have fallen under Obama, the claims brushes over that deficits remained above the trillion dollar mark for several years after Bush left office. Thus, Politifact rates this as Half True.

Note: The above information was provided by politifact.com.

Politifact, above, indicates that under President Bill Clinton, the deficit was reversed and turned into a surplus. This is true, but it took Speaker Newt Gingrich and the House Republicans, who were in the majority, to push through measures to allow this.

According to Ryan Dwyer, in an article in the Washington Times, in February 2010; while liberals, including President Barak Obama, love to say that President George W. Bush squandered the Clinton era budget surpluses and piled up deficits with expensive wars and tax cuts for the rich, the truth is that President Bush’s deficits were the product of spending, not tax cuts.

Mr. Dwyer quotes Stephen Moore’s (Wall Street Journal) book, The End of Prosperity,” which indicates that Mr. Bush’s 2001 tax cuts failed to revive an economy still staggering from the bursting of the dot-com bubble. Mr. Bush’s strategy had been to adopt a demand-side, Keynesian stimulus, hoping that putting a few extra dollars in Americans’ pockets would jump-start the economy through increased consumption. This approach faltered, not just because Americans opted to save their rebates, but because it neglected the importance of business investment to overall growth. The economy lagged and revenues stagnated.

In 2003, Mr. Bush cut the dividend and capital gains rates to 15 percent each and the economy responded. In two years, stocks rose 20 percent. In three years, $15 trillion of new wealth was created. The U.S. economy added 8 million new jobs from mid-2003 to early 2007, and the median household increased its wealth by $20,000 in real terms.

Dwyer further goes on to indicate that the real jolt for tax-cutting opponents was that the 03 Bush tax cuts also generated a massive increase in federal tax receipts. From 2004 to 2007, federal tax revenues increased by $785 billion, the largest four-year increase in American History. According to the Treasury Department, individual and corporate income tax receipts were up 40 percent in the three years following the Bush tax cuts. Furthermore, the “rich” paid an even higher percentage of the total tax burden than they had at any time in the previous 40 years.

Unfortunately, much of the increase in revenue resulting from the Bush tax cuts was offset by spending, including the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and the Medicare prescription drug plan.

9/11 happened. What were we supposed to do? Bend over and say, “Thank you, may I have another?” Also, the Clinton administration called for regime change in Iraq and the Iraq war had supports from both Democrats and Republicans. See: Can Democrats be that Forgetful? Plus the Democrats were pushing the Medicare prescription drug plan.

President George W. Bush lowered taxes and revenue to the federal government increased while individual citizens prospered. For some of the spending, we had no choice, and Democrats were pushing for a Medicare prescription drug plan.

Taking into consideration, all of the above, I would rate this claim by Occupy Democrats as much too complex to draw any sort of conclusion. But remember, Occupy Democrats lies, tells half-truths, and takes things out of context. The above is no exception.

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OCCUPY DEMOCRATS, A LYING CORRUPT GROUP – PART ONE

According to politifact.com, Occupy Democrats is an advocacy group that was created to counterbalance the Tea Party and to give President Obama and other progressive Democrats a Congress that will work with them to grow the economy, create jobs, promote fairness, fight inequality, and get money out of politics. Occupy Democrats also has a Facebook page, and most of my liberal Facebook friends are fans of the page. It sounds good, doesn’t it?

Of course, I often see posts where my liberal FB friends have shared memes from the Occupy Democrats Facebook page, and those memes are almost always wrong about everything. Here is an example, and there will be several more to come over the next few days.

Occupy_Dems_Trump

If Donald Trump had just put his father’s money in a mutual fund, he’d have $8 billion. Occupy Democrats posted an image on its FB page in December 2015. The image was a smiling Donald Trump with the caption reading, “Bloomberg puts Trump’s current net worth at $2.9 billion. If Trump had just put his father’s money in a mutual fund that tracked the S&P 500 and spent his career finger-painting, he’d have $8 billion. The source of the post is Deborah Friedell with the London Review of Books. According to Politifact, Occupy Democrats did a fine job of quoting Friedell, but Friedell did a less than stellar job of quoting the source for her claim. Friedell’s words come from her review of a new biography of Donald Trump, Never Enough: Donald Trump and the Pursuit of Success by Michael D’Antonio. If you read the National Journal story, it doesn’t directly tie whatever money Trump got from his father to an eventual $8 billion today. Here’s the key paragraph from a September 2015 article headlined, “The 2 Easy Way Donald Trump Could have been even Richer: Doing Nothing.”

“Had the celebrity businessman and Republican presidential candidate invested his eventual share of his father’s real-estate company into a mutual fund of S&P 500 stocks in 1974, it would be worth nearly $3 billion today, thanks to the market’s performance over the past four decades. If he’d invested the $200 million that Forbes magazine determined he was worth in 1982 into that index fund, it would have brown to more than $8 billion today.”

Politifact goes on to indicate that there’s a bit of informed guesswork behind these numbers because outsiders can only know so much about Trump’s finances. The National Journal writer, S.V. Date, figured Trump started with $20 million in 1974. That’s the year he became president of his father’s real estate company. By one estimate, the firm was worth about $200 million and divided among Donald and his four siblings, each would have received $40 million.

But it’s not as though the company was liquidated that year. Trump’s father lived until 1999, so whatever happened is more complicated than trump receiving a cash inheritance in 2974 and deciding what he would do with it. We’re left with a question of how much money Trump received from his father, and, at what point, those assets morphed from being his father’s to being his.

In 1982, after running his father’s firm for eight years, Forbes magazine estimated Trump’s worth at $200 million. Since he was in charge of the company, those dollars would be more his than his father’s. The Journal article skirted around this uncertainty with careful phrasing. The author talked about Trump investing his eventual share of his father’s real estate company. An eventual share is not cash in hand. If the $200 million didn’t come from Trump’s father, then you can’t say that the father’s money could have been worth $8 million today.

The best summary of the National Journal article is that it presents a hypothetical investment scenario using numbers that have some basis in the value of the Trump holdings, but aren’t necessarily what Trump got directly from his father.

Occupy Democrats shared an image that said if Trump had taken the money he got form his father and simply put in in a fund that tracked the S&P 500, he’d have $8 billion today. While it’s true that Trump got a leg up from his father on the order of many tens of millions of dollars, this specific claim suffers from a key flaw.

According to politifact, the only way to hit the $8 billion mark is to start with $200 million in 1982. Plus it’s wrong to say that was Trump’s father’s money. While the father’s business put Trump on the path to have $200 million in 1982, Trump himself had been running the company for eight years.

Thus, they rated the claim by Occupy Democrats false.

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