"The right of freely examining public characters and measures, and of free communication among the people thereon ... has ever been justly deemed the only effectual guardian of every other right." --James Madison
Editor's Note: Friday marked the one-year anniversary of Andrew Breitbart's death. He never feared to ask the tough questions and seek the accountability in politics that so few "journalists" today pursue. May his legacy be remembered and inspire others to defend Liberty.
"Andrew Breitbart's quest for the truth served as an inspiration to people around the globe. It had a profound impact on both of us as well. Andrew not only served as fellow warrior in the trenches of journalism, but he also made an impact on our lives and both of the organizations where we work. ... [W]e are excited to announce the Franklin Center and Heritage Foundation will once again sponsor this year's Breitbart Awards. In the months following Andrew's death last year, Franklin and Heritage teamed up for a summit on the future of media. ... Today, as we mourn the loss of Andrew and pay tribute to his accomplishments, we're calling on you help ensure his legacy lives. Please take a moment to visit BreitbartAwards.com to nominate someone whose efforts advance the spirit of Andrew Breitbart's work. We're accepting nominations for individuals who are driven by an indomitable pursuit for truth and accountability, and whose work has broken meaningful ground in advancing those causes on behalf of the public good. ... As you think about who best to nominate, consider these questions: Who has the courage and honesty to tell the real stories that matter to people's lives? When the legacy media fails to do its job, who among the army of bloggers stands out when holding the institutions of power accountable? Who is the citizen activist who uses information to dig up the truth and serve as a watchdog in your community? Andrew was incredibly kind, devoted to his family and work, and most importantly, enthusiastic about life. He cherished freedom and liberty. And his work had a profound impact on American politics, media and culture. Help us keep his legacy alive." --Heritage Foundation's Rob Bluey and Erik Telford
Re: The Left
"President Obama has been criss-crossing the country proclaiming the dire effects of [the sequester] if the Republicans in the House didn't bow to his demands. We don't know what his demands are, but he spent a lot of money accusing the GOP of not caving into them. The Department of Homeland Security is made up, apparently, of the only group of people in America that believed Obama. A division of DHS got a jump on Sequester Day by letting 'several hundred' illegal aliens who were in jail, out of jail and into what a spokesperson called 'placed on an appropriate, more cost-effective form of supervised release.' Putting aside the fact that if this more cost-effective form of supervised release were available before the sequester, why didn't DHS take advantage of this money-saving capacity? Maybe using NON cost-effective, NON appropriate forms of keeping track of illegal aliens awaiting ... is yet another example of worthless Federal programs that, when added together, lead to a $16.5 trillion national debt. ... If nothing else DHS should be sent to the Cabinet Penalty Box for astonishing stupidity in the face of a growing public relations crisis by announcing his long-planned retirement on the same day as the prisoner release." --columnist Rich Galen
Editor's Note: The number of illegals released was actually more like 2,000.
For the Record
"Actually, the GOP bill wasn't designed to avert cuts, it was designed to avert these cuts by giving Obama the power to replace them with equivalent cuts of his choosing. He's been screaming for weeks that the sequester will chop crucial services by hitting agencies indiscriminately across the board, right? Well, there's the solution -- let O protect the important stuff, like naval deployments, by reinstating the Pentagon's money and cutting stuff like cowboy poetry festivals instead. Result: The bill fails, 38-60. So terrified was the White House of the political responsibility of deciding which arms of government should bear the burden of an $85 billion haircut that they actually threatened to veto the bill if it passed. No need to worry about that; Senate Democrats, who've been shirking political responsibility for years by not passing a budget, were happy to kill this thing for him. Imagine how awkward it would have been if they hadn't and O had to explain to the public that he had the power to save money in ways besides, say, releasing illegal immigrants from detention centers but chose not to exercise it. His whole strategy in this process is to impose maximum pain on Americans while blaming Republicans for supposedly tying his hands in trying to avert it. They offered to untie his hands. He refused. Leadership." --HotAir's Allahpundit
"In 2007, the government was 40 percent smaller than it is today. Were poor people sleeping under bridges? Were the elderly starving? Were planes grounded? Was food unsafe to eat? Here's another question: Are Americans really this gullible? ... Democrats like to pretend that every last penny of government spending is wise, benevolent and essential. ... Sure, the government performs some necessary functions, but it is also vulnerable to abuse because nobody is watching. Consider the example of Al Gore. Upon leaving the vice presidency, Mr. Gore's net worth was estimated at $2 million. But with the advent of Mr. Obama's 'investments' in green energy, Mr. Gore has profited handsomely. His company, General Investment Management, invested in a number of companies that received 'green' subsidies. Gore's net worth (before the sale of Current TV to Al Jazeera) was estimated by the Washington Post to be $100 million. The Obama economy has been awful for average Americans but exceedingly profitable for the well connected. Some government spending is necessary, much is sinfully wasteful, and the remainder is corrupt. If Americans have stopped believing that then a key aspect of the American character is dead." --columnist Mona Charen
"I believe in your right to know all the facts concerning the people's business. ... I know that you can face any prospect and do anything that has to be done as long as you know the truth of what you are up against. We will put our fiscal house in order. And as we do, we will build those things we need to make our state a better place in which to live, and we will enjoy them more, knowing we can afford them and they are paid for." --Ronald Reagan
"Mark, The 'Republican Sequester' Setup is the most stinging yet factually accurate rebuke of this regime that I have read anywhere, period. Kudos to you, fellow Patriot, for telling it like it is. May God help our nation realize the error of its ways before it is too late!" --Kent in Addison, Illinois
"All but the low information crowd and the left-wing Kool-aid infused can see the hysteria churning going on here by Obama and his minions. True that the Republicans don't have clean hands, but the left is off the charts here on the sequester that the White House suggested, sponsored, supported and threatened to veto anything that tried to stop it. Now, sadly, the sequester is an orphan. No one will acknowledge parentage." --PK in South Carolina
"Once again Mark has hit the nail on the head about Obama's macro socialist agenda; I have been saying for years Obama's plan of 'fundamentally transforming the United States of America' goes way beyond just implementing socialism here. It is part and parcel of his 'anti-imperialist' agenda which employ(s) his classist 'politics of disparity' to the world as a whole; the end game would have 'economic equality' apply to every person on the planet." --Ron in Vancouver
"As usual, the Friday Digest tells it like it is. The frustrating thing is the simpleton Republicans can't seem to articulate the argument this easily. Why is that?" --David in Evergreen, Colorado
"One reason liberals aren't interested in solving problems is because they are so totally invested in using them. Rahm Emanuel, Barack Obama's first White House Chief of Staff, made that clear when he voiced the cardinal rule of liberalism, 'Never let a serious crisis go to waste.' How do politicians 'never let a crisis go to waste?' They use it to get elected. They use problems of all sorts to get elected by blaming their political opponents for causing the problem and by selling themselves as the saviors of those of us whom they can convince are victims of said problem and of the 'villains' whom they say perpetrated it. And once elected, they use this same blame game to get their policies enacted, increase their political power, and enhance their chances of getting re-elected. ... Continuing to elect politicians who have nothing to sell but blame, hate, and 'issues' gives us a society in which it pays to invent crises -- so you can blame them on your opponent." --columnist Dan Dagget
"On Feb. 28, the House passed the Senate's version of the Obama administration's expanded Violence Against Women Act. Left-leaning pundits proclaim that the new law will somehow provide additional protections for American Indian women, gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transgender people and immigrants. In short, you are covered by this 'new protection' as long as you can prove you are not a heterosexual white male. Congressional and Obama administration proponents apparently want us to ignore that the new law adds $650 million in spending to the already bloated federal budget. Nor has anyone noted an obvious inconsistency: While we're passing new laws to protect women, we're putting them into U.S. military ground combat units. Perhaps fear of prosecution will prevent enemy combatants from raping our female soldiers and Marines on the battlefield." --columnist Oliver North
Opinion in Brief
"[T]he crucible of everyday competition makes you acutely aware of forecasts and results. This is HUGELY different from the climate fight, where people who will not forecast, but try to make a living by telling you why something happened after it did, seem to populate the scene. ... While I can see my rival's point in the weather, I can't see why there is a climate debate, yet alone why we are committing economic suicide as a nation. There is a big difference between weather and climate. In weather, we make forecasts that are tested DAILY and we certainly can see how the other guy says what he says. In the climate fight, apparently no forecast is ever tested and policy will be implemented even when it's wrong. In my job, if I am not right enough, people fire me. That's life in the competitive private sector. I pay for my mistakes. With the climate fight, WHEN they are wrong, policy is implemented anyway. And guess who pays? All of us!" --meteorologist Joe Bastardi
"He who controls the textbooks, teaching guides and tests controls the academic agenda. That is how the propagandistic outfitting of students in Islamic garb came to pass in the unlikely setting of the conservative Lumberton, Texas, school district. As Fox News reporter Todd Starnes noted [last] week, a 32-year veteran of the high school led a world geography lesson on Islam in which hijab-wrapped students were banned from using the words 'suicide bomber' and 'terrorist' to describe Muslim mass murderers in favor of the term 'freedom fighter.' ... Top-down federalized 'Common Core' standards are now sweeping the country. ... Grassroots activists in Indiana, Alabama, Utah and nearly a dozen other states are now educating themselves and their state legislatures about the centralized education racket, whether it's under the guise of Common Core or any other name. ... As Texas goes, so goes the nation. The fight against the federalization of academic standards is a national education Alamo." --columnist Michelle Malkin
The Last Word
"'The worst-case scenario for us,' a leading anti-budget-cuts lobbyist told The Washington Post, 'is the sequester hits and nothing bad really happens.' Think about that. Worst case? ... Oh, the humanity! ... The administration has every incentive to make the sky fall, lest we suffer that terrible calamity -- cuts the nation survives. Are they threatening to pare back consultants, conferences, travel and other nonessential fluff? Hardly. ... Because of this year's payroll tax increase, millions of American workers have had to tighten their belts by precisely 2 percent. They found a way. Washington, spending $3.8 trillion, cannot? If so, we might as well declare bankruptcy now and save the attorneys' fees. ... [F]or Obama, this is not about deficit reduction, which interests him not at all. The purpose is purely political: to complete his Election Day victory by breaking the Republican opposition. ... Break them now and the road is open to resume enactment of the expansive, entitlement-state liberalism that Obama proclaimed in his second inaugural address. But he cannot win if 'nothing bad really happens.' Indeed, he'd look both foolish and cynical for having cried wolf. His incentive to deliberately make the most painful and socially disruptive cuts possible ... is enormous. And alarming. Hail Armageddon." --columnist Charles Krauthammer
Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus et Fidelis!
Nate Jackson for The Patriot Post Editorial Team