The Patriot Post® · Mid-Day Digest
IN TODAY’S EDITION
- Budget bipartisanship in Congress means giving Democrats everything they want.
- Bush(43) just gave the elitist position on illegal immigrants.
- The new Gerber baby has Down syndrome, highlighting these kids’ plight in many ways.
- The latest “settled science” confirms USDA diet recommendations are wrong.
- It wasn’t long ago that the guy calling for a military parade was … Chuck Schumer.
- What on earth is an “education desert”? A leftist think tank fills us in.
- Plus our Daily Features: Top Headlines, Memes, Cartoons, Columnists and Short Cuts.
“The same prudence which in private life would forbid our paying our own money for unexplained projects, forbids it in the dispensation of the public moneys.” —Thomas Jefferson (1808)
By Michael Swartz
Our federal budget process is supposed to go like this: The House comes up with a budget resolution and a dozen appropriation bills to fill it out, then passes them and sends them to the Senate, which does its job followed by any necessary reconciling between the bills. Then the budget moves along to the president, who signs it before the next fiscal year begins on the first of October. That’s how it’s supposed to work, anyway.
In practice, though, this annual exercise stumbles along between continuing resolutions as partisans from both parties hold the budget hostage to get what they want out of the deal. Recently, we were treated to the latest in a predictable series of government “shutdowns” that essentially amount to paid vacations for federal employees. Early this morning, after a brief midnight shutdown forced by Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), who objected to the proposed budget’s spending increase, the House and Senate cobbled together the necessary votes and sent it to President Donald Trump for his signature. Both houses actually agreed to a two-year deal presented by Senate leadership, but they face another deadline of March 23 to hammer out the details.
“When the Democrats are in power, Republicans appear to be the conservative party,” Paul tweeted. “But when Republicans are in power, it seems there is no conservative party.”
Naturally, that long-term security comes with a big price tag — an additional $320 billion in deficit spending during that time period — but we finally get an increase in military spending after years of sequester-mandated cuts. In addition, the Senate deal eliminates some lingering ObamaCare gems like the “death panels.”
Yet for all those guns, the Democrats have larded us up with a lot of butter. And the Republicans have gone right along. As The Wall Street Journal put it, “Democrats backed up the truck for funding on everything from community health centers to billions on child-care grants to $20 billion for infrastructure.” One example is the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), which leftists blasted the GOP for not immediately reauthorizing after it expired late last year. A recent six-year extension is now a decade-long boondoggle. Democrat demands for dollar-for-dollar parity with increased defense spending also netted them more money for infrastructure, and a relief from running up against our artificial debt limit until sometime next year.
“What happened to the Democrats’ ‘Better Deal?’” asks The Washington Post. “Check the spending bill.” Chuck Schumer crowed, “This budget agreement shows that the Better Deal agenda is more than a set of ideas; now, it’s going to be real policies. It delivers on exactly what we laid out last year: rural broadband, child care and assistance with college tuition.”
Good thing the GOP controls both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue!
That additional money spent on non-essential items in return for simply undoing cuts that arguably should never have been made to the (constitutionally mandated) defense of our nation is the part of the bargain that rankles some House Republicans — the ones who were elected by the Tea Party to fight against these types of deals.
“I am baffled why the Republican Party has turned into such a big spending party. It is one thing to spend money; it is another thing to spend money you don’t have,” lamented Rep. Mo Brooks of Alabama, who was elected in the initial 2010 Tea Party wave. Brooks vowed to be a “hell no” vote on the deal and was joined by several other fiscally conscious Republican stalwarts.
But Brooks and company seem to have missed the memo that deficit spending is back in style. And while it may goose the GDP rate slightly and makes individual members look better when they have some pork to share, the issue is that increasing interest rates will make this deficit spending even worse than it appears now. For their part, Democrats complained loudly about raising the deficit by $1.5 trillion over 10 years (a spurious number anyway) with the recently passed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, but they’re now dead silent about similar amounts of deficit spending.
So this grand bargain, as well as the omnibus spending bill that will follow it in a few weeks once all the appropriations are ironed out, will be the product of centrist House Republicans joining with middle-of-the-road Democrats. Conservatives oppose this bill for its deficit spending, while far-left Democrats are enraged that it doesn’t include a resolution to the DACA issue. Those who may directly benefit from this largesse will be the big winners, but since all this was accomplished without a scintilla of meaningful entitlement reform — President Trump long ago promised not to touch Social Security or Medicare — our children and grandchildren will once again be big losers. Sad!
By Mark Alexander
Former President George W. Bush, a man whose tenure as president included some things to be admired, stepped into the immigration debate this week in support of the Democrats’ DACA duplicity and deceit.
Speaking in Abu Dhabi, of all places — the capital of the Kingdom of the United Arab Emirates isn’t exactly famous for its advocacy of human rights — Bush offered this tired and out-of-touch rationale for giving illegal aliens citizenship: “Americans don’t want to pick cotton at 105 degrees, but there are people who want to put food on their family’s tables and are willing to do that. We ought to say thank you and welcome them.”
Seriously, he said that. There may be a grain of truth in that remark, but he should have said “broccoli” instead of “cotton,” because cotton harvesting has been mechanized for more than 80 years.
Tucker Carlson’s assessment of Bush’s remarks hits center mass: “This is the magical world of our elites — people who have never had to worry about how illegal immigrants might affect their kids’ schools, or the crime rates in their gated neighborhoods, or the social cohesion of their communities, because they’re insulated from all of that. Instead, they repeat ‘diversity is our strength’ three times, like a spell, and assume the best will happen. The rest of us, as the former president noted, can say ‘thank you.’”
As respected historian Victor Davis Hanson observed regarding Bush’s assertion, “That was an argument of the 19th century slave owner. It’s not a good argument. It’s not ethically on the right side of history.”
And that’s precisely the argument Democrats are making to ensure their most promising future voting constituency. Recall that most slaveholders in the 19th century were Democrats — so this must still be hidden in their platform somewhere!
The issue of whether illegal immigrants are in violation of our nation’s laws is settled — they are. The issue of what to do with those who have been here for generations is complex, as noted by President Donald Trump in recent weeks. But as the current president endeavors to resolve this issue, which a long list of previous presidents have not, perhaps “W” should keep his cotton-picking opinions to himself. Thank you!
By Jordan Candler
In 2016, Hillary Clinton demeaned her political adversaries — the tens of millions of Americans who would refuse to vote for her — by famously declaring them “deplorables.” Sadly, there’s another group of people the Left not only belittles but considers inhuman and unneeded. In cultural parlance, they’re deemed “abortables.” That term encapsulates many different groups of children — blacks and other minorities, for example, upon whom Planned Parenthood preys, just as its founder intended — but especially babies who will be born with Down syndrome, assuming they’re even afforded the chance of escaping the womb alive.
One of the saddest examples of this is in Iceland. There, CBS News recently reported, “Since prenatal screening tests were introduced in Iceland in the early 2000s, the vast majority of women — close to 100 percent — who received a positive test for Down syndrome terminated their pregnancy.” The rate isn’t much better elsewhere. In the U.S., 67% of unborn babies whom doctors suspect have Down syndrome are aborted. That number climbs to 77% in France and a near-universal 98% in Denmark.
Leftists justify these abhorrent abortion rates under the guise of saving these babies (and their families) from hardship. As Landspitali University Hospital counselor Helga Sol Olafsdottir quite tellingly explained, “We don’t look at abortion as a murder. We look at it as a thing that we ended. We ended a possible life that may have had a huge complication … preventing suffering for the child and for the family.” But who in this world doesn’t face suffering in some form or another? Aborting children with Down syndrome is merely an excuse for avoiding responsibility, and, ironically, it causes suffering. Nobody wants cancer, or a chronic disease, or a broken family, but when those things strike, the solution is to deal with them, not to bury them (quite literally in this case).
Thankfully, Down syndrome kids are being provided a much-needed spotlight thanks to Gerber. This week, Lucas Warren, one-and-a-half years old, became the company’s “2018 Gerber Spokesbaby.” He differs from all past honorees in that he has Down syndrome. His endearing portrait and adorable persona didn’t just beat out other nominees; they also illustrated that the sanctity of life extends to every single baby regardless of what hardship they will face. Just one look at him and you can’t help but smile yourself.
Gerber president Bill Partyka made an interesting observation when he stated, “Every year, we choose the baby who best exemplifies Gerber’s long-standing heritage of recognizing that every baby is a Gerber baby. This year, Lucas is the perfect fit.” Let’s hope and pray that someday the whole world will realize that every baby with Down syndrome is the perfect fit, and they have the same dignity and value as anyone else.
Trump at 2018 National Prayer Breakfast: We praise God for how blessed we are to be American (RealClearPolitics)
Stocks enter correction territory (Bloomberg)
“Armageddon” continues: CVS to hike wages, introduce paid parental leave with windfall from new tax law (CNBC)
Study: Primary reason why teens can’t find work? Higher minimum wage (The Daily Wire)
How the media buried two huge FBI stories (The Federalist)
John Kelly sends letter to staff in response to Porter accusations, calls domestic abuse “abhorrent” (Fox News)
Global warming update: The sun is growing colder (New York Post)
California Democrat and #MeToo leader accused of groping two male staffers (Politico)
Banning books, especially To Kill a Mockingbird and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, in the name of political correctness is absurd (Washington Examiner)
Policy: The budget deal is bipartisanship at its worst (Investor’s Business Daily)
Policy: Lawmakers can take baby steps on entitlement reform (The Hill)
For more of today’s news, visit Patriot Headline Report.
For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.
For more of today’s top cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.
MORE ANALYSIS FROM THE PATRIOT POST
- From the ‘Settled Science’ Files: USDA Nutrition Guidelines Upside Down — New research finds that high carbohydrate intake is worse for one’s health than a diet high in fats.
- Sen. Warner’s ‘Back Channel’ Is No Witch Hunt — Senate Intel Committee members quickly defend Warner’s attempt to contact Steele.
- What on Earth Is an ‘Education Desert’? — An Urban Institute study argues that millions of Americans don’t have access to college or Internet.
- Video: That Time Schumer Wanted a Military Parade — Way back in 2014. What a difference four years and a change in administrations can make.
BEST OF RIGHT OPINION
- David Harsanyi: Our Infrastructure Is Not ‘Crumbling’
- Rich Lowry: Yes, Throw a Parade
- Erick Erickson: If You’re Reading This, You’re Dead
- David Limbaugh: There’s So Much Smoke. Why Worry About a Fire?
- Michael Barone: Gentry Liberals Own the Democratic Party
For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.
OPINION IN BRIEF
David Harsanyi: “It’s … worth remembering that when liberals talk about infrastructure, they don’t necessarily mean roads or bridges or airports or water-processing plants. They mean expensive social engineering projects and Keynesian job-creation schemes. … According to a 2010 Associated Press analysis, the first 10 months of Obama’s economic stimulus plan showed virtually no effect on local unemployment rates, which rose and fell regardless of money spent on infrastructure projects. It barely even helped construction jobs. What it did do was fund cronyistic ventures and debt-padding waste. Around $90 billion of Obama’s infrastructure-heavy ‘stimulus’ plan went to green energy companies (many of which are now in bankruptcy) rather than repairing bridges. Another $1.3 billion went to subsidize Amtrak rather than repairing the roads you actually drive on. Another $8 billion went to various other rail projects (with a priority on high-speed rail) rather than highways or byways or your local street. Now, though one expects Trump’s $1 trillion infrastructure bill to focus more on traditional projects, the case for the new spending is predicated on the same chilling and misleading rhetoric we’ve been hearing for years. Although still nebulous, the White House’s plan apparently features some attempt to reduce the regulatory burden that the private sector must wade through before gaining approval for building permits. This is a positive step considering the vast majority of infrastructure is still built by the private sector. This should be a goal of the administration with or without the massive infrastructure bill.”
Power corrupts: “When the Democrats are in power, Republicans appear to be the conservative party. But when Republicans are in power, it seems there is no conservative party.” —Sen. Rand Paul
Alpha Jackass: “Where’s Rand Paul’s neighbor when we need him?” —Bette Midler
Non Compos Mentis: “The five big publicly-traded insurance companies in this country, together, cover 125 million people and they are raking in cash — more than $17 billion in profits in the last year alone. … And as we wrestle with insurance companies to get them to treat their customers a little better, keep in mind on this that taxpayers are directly responsible for a huge proportion of those giant profits. The top insurers in the United States pull in nearly 60 percent of their total revenue from Medicare and Medicaid.” —Sen. Elizabeth Warren
Paging the FBI: “This president that we have is really out of control. Sometimes I want to just see him impeached. Other times, quite honestly — I hope there are no FBI agents here — I wouldn’t mind seeing him dead.” —Northeastern’s School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs professor Barry Bluestone
Village Idiots: “Every time I see a woman in public reading a book by a man (usually dead, usually white), I fantasize about offering her a book by a woman instead, replacing the male voices in her head with female ones one book at a time.” —author Danielle Lazarin
Belly laugh of the week: “Having yielded one minute to the leader is the most profound one minute probably in the history of this institution.” —Rep. Maxine Waters on Nancy Pelosi’s eight-hour speech advocating illegal aliens
And last… “During Pelosi’s [marathon speech] … she was brought to tears talking about her young grandson’s birthday party. According to Pelosi, after her grandson blew out the candles on his cake, he said he wished for ‘brown skin and brown eyes like Antonio,’ his friend from Guatemala. … Given the Left’s eager embrace of cultural chaos, Pelosi’s grandson can choose to be a Guatemalan woman if he wants to!” —Gary Bauer
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. We also humbly ask prayer for your Patriot team, that our mission would seed and encourage the spirit of Liberty in the hearts and minds of our countrymen.
Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis
Nate Jackson, Managing Editor
Mark Alexander, Publisher