The Patriot Post® · Daily Digest
“The very idea of the power and the right of the people to establish government presupposes the duty of every individual to obey the established government.” —George Washington, Farewell Address, 1796
TOP RIGHT HOOKS
The data breach at the Office of Personnel Management feels like some kind of twisted auction. In early June, it was the data of four million federal employees. Any higher? Hey, it’s the middle of June and the number has risen to 14 million and the applications of everyone seeking a security clearance. Going, going… Wait, OPM announced Thursday there was a second hack affecting 21.5 million Americans who worked for the government, contracted with the government, or were married to or friends with someone who was. Not only were Social Security numbers, names and birthdates taken, the hackers (probably from China) have addresses, mental health history, some financial records and fingerprints of a significant percentage of the American population. The breach extends to people like FBI Director James Comey, who admitted he, too, had his data stolen in the breach. OPM said taxpayers would foot the bill for three years of identity-theft protection from a private company for those affected. But for lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, it’s not enough. In a statement, Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA) said he wanted OPM Director (and former National Political Director for Obama’s campaign) Katherine Archuleta gone. “The technological and security failures at the Office of Personnel Management predate this director’s term,” Warner said, “but Director Archuleta’s slow and uneven response has not inspired confidence that she is the right person to manage OPM through this crisis.”
The state’s assault on the Oregon bakers who declined to make a cake for a lesbian wedding isn’t over. Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) has ordered Aaron and Melissa Klein, owners of the now-shuttered Sweet Cakes by Melissa, to pay their $135,000 fine by Monday, July 13 … or else. “We have asked that they get in touch with us by July 13th either to make a payment in full, or an arrangement for partial payment, or as they know, they can contact our agency and seek what is called a stay of enforcement,” BOLI said through a spokesman. If the Kleins seek a stay but are denied, they can appeal through the Oregon courts, but given the thorough smackdown they’ve already received a reprieve is unlikely. “Basically,” said Aaron Klein, “the state of Oregon is saying we can kick you out of your house and make you homeless. They have no qualms about the fact that they’re doing this to my five kids as well.” That’s because the Kleins committed the ultimate sin of crossing the Rainbow Mafia. The good news is the couple has raised more than $200,000 through a funding campaign (their first fundraising effort was shut down by GoFundMe, which claimed the Kleins’ purpose was “discriminatory”). The bad news is their income has been halved since being forced to close their bakery. Aaron now works as a garbage collector to put food on the table for his family.
When Democrats can’t get their agenda through the legislature via legitimate means, they turn to federal agencies to implement it instead. Case in point: ObamaCare. Leftists scored big with its passage in 2009, but fierce opposition to what became known as “death panels” forced them to abandon a provision that would have granted financial incentives to physicians providing counseling to aging Medicare patients. Now that ObamaCare is “the law of the land,” as the Supreme Court has twice wrongly affirmed, the Department of Health and Human Services is taking matters into its own hands. This week, with the support of the American Medical Association, HHS put “death panels” back on the examination table. Advocates quickly noted it isn’t a mandate. “Rather, the proposed regulation would allow medical providers to bill Medicare for ‘advance-care planning’ should a patient want to have the discussion,” according to the Los Angeles Times. But we were also promised that we could keep our insurance plan if we liked it. The way some conservatives presented death panels in 2009 — ask your doctor if death is right for you — was somewhat of an exaggeration, but it maybe wasn’t so much hyperbole as it was a prediction. Just five years ago, few thought same-sex marriage would be legal in 2015. In fact, Democrats like Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, who now embrace same-sex marriage, once opposed it. For leftists, progress means moving the goal posts when the opportunity is convenient. That’s why the idea of the government making life-and-death decisions isn’t anything to scoff at. Just ask our nation’s veterans.
FEATURED RIGHT ANALYSIS
By Lewis Morris
As the worst U.S. president of the 20th century, Jimmy Carter’s prognostications about foreign policy should be taken for what they’re worth — nothing. But that didn’t stop MSNBC from asking the former president his thoughts on the state of America in the modern world. Carter’s response was predictably pessimistic.
America is “in an inevitable relative decline,” Carter said, “not because of any fault of ours” but through “the combination of China and India and Brazil and South Africa and others” exercising “economic and cultural influence [that] will replace a lot of the power and preeminence that the United States enjoyed in the past.”
“It’s just happening,” Carter explained, “in the historical evolutionary, unavoidable circumstance.”
At least he didn’t use the word “malaise.”
Carter’s mindset is shared by the leftist intelligentsia. They have predicted and, more importantly, sought to bring about our nation’s downfall for decades, rolling out a string of would-be superpower replacements ranging from the former Soviet Union to Saudi Arabia, Japan, the European Union and now China. Carter joins the likes of Columbia professor Jeffrey Sachs, serial plagiarist Fareed Zakaria and former Enron adviser Paul Krugman in wistfully speaking of America’s bygone status, but their views are tainted by a raw disdain for the U.S. and what it stands for.
They pretend to lament the days of American greatness, but they often rail against the U.S. for being an international “bully” standing athwart some socialist utopia. Simply peel back Carter’s words on MSNBC or one of Krugman’s New York Times columns, and lurking just below the surface is contempt for capitalism, individual liberty and the republican form of government that made this country great.
As Investor’s Business Daily pointed out, American decline is no more inevitable than its rise as a world power. And who’s to say that America is in decline anyway? Despite the best efforts of Carter, Obama, Krugman and friends, America remains the world’s preeminent power. No other country, or combination of countries, can do what we do, because they don’t have what we have.
This nation’s wealth rivals that of China, Japan, the UK and Germany combined. It is home to by far the richest and most robust consumer market. And our military still holds sway the world over despite recent and unwise cutbacks.
Carter’s assertion that other countries stand ready to replace America is overselling it a bit. The oft-cited bogeyman China just suffered an economic shock this week that wiped out a third of its stock market’s value. And years of forced abortion and social engineering are destined to send that country into a demographic tailspin that could unravel its social fabric in the coming decades.
The European Union is constantly on the brink of unraveling because of debt issues from member states like Greece and Portugal. The nations that make up the EU can’t even agree on a defense strategy, despite the fact that the two bloodiest wars of the last century were born there.
Decline, as political analyst Charles Krauthammer once put it, is a choice — one that Carter consciously made when he buckled to the Islamists who took over Iran in 1979, and one our current commander in chief is making with that very same regime over its nuclear weapons program.
Carter, Obama and their ilk speak of American decline not so much because that’s what they see, but because it’s what they want. Their inherent pessimism guides their decisions, as does their disdain for individual liberty and personal responsibility. The very things that make this country great are what annoy them most, and they want to knock us down a few pegs. Consequently, they look to nations that don’t possess America’s qualities as a means to offset our power and influence.
In recent times, few have understood the greatness and unique qualities of this country better than Ronald Reagan. It was no accident that America thrived under his leadership because he believed in this country and recognized how special it truly is. He shared that vision succinctly in his farewell address in 1989:
“I’ve spoken of the shining city all my political life, but I don’t know if I ever quite communicated what I saw when I said it. But in my mind it was a tall, proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, windswept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace; a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here. That’s how I saw it, and see it still.”
In fact, Reagan concluded, “We did it. We weren’t just marking time. We made a difference. We made the city stronger, we made the city freer, and we left her in good hands. All in all, not bad, not bad at all.”
Our nation is in desperate need of a post-Obama leader who, as Reagan did after Carter, can prove how very wrong the anti-America Left really is.
TODAY AT PATRIOTPOST.US
- ANALYSIS: Education: Debating the Scope of Federal Control
- OK Gov’t Counters Court’s Ten Commandments Ruling
- Rick Perry Solves Sanctuary Cities
- Trump’s Immigration Combover
- In a Flash, NYSE Shows Fragility of the System
BEST OF RIGHT OPINION
- Tony Perkins: Lien on Me
- Mona Charen: The Democrats’ Trump Card
- Brent Bozell & Tim Graham: Unasked Questions in the LGBT Wars
- David Harsanyi: Bernie Sanders Is the Future of the Democrat Party
- Joe Bastardi: An Open Question to Our Universities: What if You Are Wrong?
For more, visit Right Opinion.
OPINION IN BRIEF
Tony Perkins: “Same-sex ‘marriage’ isn’t about building homes — it’s about destroying them. Ask Aaron and Melissa Klein. … In another sickening twist, the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries is ordering the family to pay their $135,000 fine by next Monday or the state will put a lien on their home. … [A] spokesman for the Bureau was candid about the brutal lengths it will go to exact payment. ‘The letter informs them that if we do not hear from them, we may turn the matter over to the Department of Revenue, which can place a lien on real property.’ Of course, the spokesman offered, ‘they can also ask for a stay of enforcement while they pursue their appeal.’ That’s cold comfort, since the person who would decide the stay is the same wannabe despot who issued the fine in the first place: Brad Avakian. ‘The judge, jury, and executioner are all in one place,’ attorney Anna Harmon vented. ‘He is intent on using his office to root out thought and speech with which he personally disagrees.’ An office, one investigation shows, that was already ethically compromised. … In emails, text messages, phone calls, and other documents, The Daily Signal found a shocking amount of collusion between the Bureau and the largest LGBT activist group in the state: Basic Rights Oregon (BRO). Avakian had already held a string of closed-door meetings with BRO leading up to Sweet Cakes’s judgment. BRO was given exclusive access to the office’s media strategies, heads-up on breaking news in the suit, in-person meetings about Sweet Cakes’s case, and even behind-the-scenes talking points. If anyone should be under the microscope for prejudice, it’s Avakian — not Aaron and Melissa Klein.”
Insight: “The most important political office is that of private citizen.” —Justice Louis D. Brandeis (1856-1941)
From the race-baiter in chief: “South Carolina taking down the confederate [sic] flag [is] a signal of good will and healing, and a meaningful step towards a better future.” —Barack Obama live-tweeting the removal of the flag from the South Carolina state capitol grounds Friday morning (And no, leftists will never be satisfied by this or any other gesture of good will.)
The gun grabber: “I’m going to speak out against the uncontrollable use of guns in our country because I believe we can do better. … We have to take on the gun lobby. . . . This is a controversial issue. I am well aware of that. But I think it is the height of irresponsibility not to talk about it.” —Hillary Clinton in Iowa and New Hampshire rallies
Social engineering: “The Amend the Code for Marriage Equality Act recognizes that the words in our laws have meaning and can continue to reflect prejudice and discrimination even when rendered null by our highest courts. Our values as a country are reflected in our laws. I authored this bill because it is imperative that our federal code reflect the equality of all marriages.” —Rep. Lois Capps (D-CA) on her bill to strike the words “husband” and “wife” from all federal laws
The BIG Lie: “[I]f the world acts now [on climate change] it will prevent up to 69,000 premature deaths in the U.S. in the year 2100 alone from poor air quality and extreme heat. And, of course, if we fail to act, the reverse is true. … We will lose billions of dollars and human lives if we fail to act.” —Gina McCarthy (“If we want to talk about pre-mature deaths, how about the 57 million innocent unborn children whose lives have been stolen since Roe v. Wade?” —Sen. James Inhofe)
Non Compos Mentis: “What percentage of the atmosphere is CO2? I don’t have that calculation.” —Gina McCarthy (“[Y]ou’re the head of the EPA … and you didn’t even know what the content of CO2 in the atmosphere [is], which is the justification for the very policies you’re talking about.” —Rep. Dana Rohrabacher)
And last… “John Kerry warned Iran that President Obama is ‘ready to walk away’ from nuclear negotiations. He’s bluffing. You can’t walk away when you’re on your knees.” —Fred Thompson
Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis!
Managing Editor Nate Jackson
Join us in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform — Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen — standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families.