Monday: Below the Fold

Biden’s war on oil, massive pay hike for feds, Red Cross’s map to a welfare state, and more.


  • Biden’s war on oil: On Sunday, the Biden administration announced that it is banning future fossil fuel drilling on 16 million acres of the National Petroleum Reserve in northern Alaska. That includes a three-million-acre region in the Beaufort Sea in the Arctic Ocean. The administration boasted that Biden’s “economic agenda has put the United States back on track to reach its climate goals for 2030 and 2050, all while reducing America’s reliance on oil.” In reality, this is merely the latest move in Biden’s ongoing war on fossil fuels, but with an important caveat. This was likely an effort to deflect criticism from climate activists of Biden’s decision on Monday to green-light in the northern Alaska region ConocoPhillips’s Willow Project, five drill sites that promise an estimated 600 million barrels of oil over the next 30 years.

  • Biden’s massive pay hike for feds: As the nation teeters on the brink of recession, thanks in large measure to Joe Biden and the Democrats’ massive spending splurges pushing inflation to a 40-year high, Biden is seeking to insulate federal employees from his mismanagement. He’s proposing a 5.2% federal pay raise for all federal employees, which represents the biggest hike in pay since the Carter administration. This proposed increase would be on top of the 4.6% increase Biden ordered in December. Republican Representative James Comer (KY) criticized the move by astutely observing: “Biden and Democrats’ reckless government spending created historic inflation. … Now President Biden is continuing to ensure that federal workers’ pay and benefits are insulated from the price tag of inflation, but it will be paid for by American taxpayers who continue to be harmed by the Biden administration’s inflationary policies.”

  • Red Cross’s map to a welfare state: Illegal immigration is costing American taxpayers billions every year. Yet rather than seek to alleviate the problem, the Red Cross is only exacerbating it by providing illegal migrants with packets that include road maps and guides to help them journey across Central America and Mexico to the U.S. southern border. According to the United Nations, some 7,000 migrants have died journeying through Central America to the U.S. from 2014 through 2022. However, rather than dissuade them from attempting the dangerous journey, the Red Cross asserted: “Our approach to migrants is strictly humanitarian. We provide information about ways to reduce risk and where to find lifesaving assistance in Mexico and Central America.”

  • 419 lawmakers call for declassifying COVID intel: In a rare instance of bipartisan unanimity, lawmakers in the House voted 419-0 for the Biden administration to declassify all intelligence related to the Wuhan Institute of Virology and its possible link to the origin of the COVID-19 pandemic. After both the FBI and the Department of Energy officially took the position that a lab leak was the most likely origin for COVID, pressure has been mounting for more information to be made available. As Republican Representative Mike Turner (OH) argued, “The American public deserves answers to every aspect of the COVID-19 pandemic, including how this virus was created and specifically, whether it was a natural occurrence of was the result of a lab-related event.” Having already passed the Senate, the bill goes to Joe Biden’s desk, where he is expected to sign it given that a veto will likely be easily overridden.

  • Memphis police academy cut corners: This is what years of Democrat leadership gets you. Following the beating death of Tyre Nichols at the hands of five Memphis police officers, it has come to light that the Memphis Police Department years ago began relaxing its officer training standards in an effort to fill vacancies. In 2014, city leaders began slashing pension benefits in response to anti-law enforcement sentiments across the country. It was the beginning of the whole “systemically racist” law enforcement narrative. Yet this foolish decision has produced a Memphis PD staffed with some officers who may never have become officers had the standards not been lowered. When the Left’s diversity, equity, and inclusion ethic is enforced, it results in greater suffering, not justice.


  • Silicon Valley Bank closed in second-biggest bank failure in U.S. history (Washington Post)

  • U.S. government steps in and says people with funds deposited at SVB will be able to access their money (CNBC)

  • Regulators close crypto-focused Signature Bank, citing systemic risk (CNBC)

  • Biden claims his “quick action” saved banking industry, blames Trump for banks collapsing (Daily Wire)

  • Biden administration faces bipartisan criticism as regulators rush to stave off banking crisis (Just the News)

  • Massive group of migrants rush El Paso port of entry (Daily Wire)

  • At least eight dead after suspected smuggling boats capsize near San Diego (Daily Wire)

  • Huge proportion of children pursuing gender transitions are actually autistic (Daily Caller)

  • Eric Swalwell wants to ban conservative news from the military (Townhall)

  • Xi Jinping begins historic third term as China’s president (BBC)

  • China flexes muscles in Latin America in latest security challenge to U.S. (Fox News)

  • Policy: The worrisome Iran-Saudi pact (National Review)

  • Satire: Biden makes Monopoly money legal tender to pay for $6.8 trillion budget (Genesius Times)

  • Humor: Historians now believe second-ever phone call was to ask Alexander Graham Bell about his car’s warranty (Babylon Bee)

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