Mid-Day Digest

May 11, 2018

IN TODAY’S EDITION

  • Record high tax revenue the result of a good GOP economy.
  • Freed prisoners set the stage for the June 12 Trump-Kim summit.
  • Motherhood is more than a full-time job, and boy are we thankful for moms!
  • The more negative the Leftmedia gets, the better Trump’s approval rating.
  • Plus our Daily Features: Top Headlines, Memes, Cartoons, Columnists and Short Cuts.

THE FOUNDATION

“If duties are too high, they lessen the consumption; the collection is eluded; and the product to the treasury is not so great as when they are confined within proper and moderate bounds.” —Alexander Hamilton (1787)

IN BRIEF

Tax Revenue Hits Record High; Dems Hardest Hit

Thomas Gallatin

“This is Armageddon,” Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) infamously insisted among her dire warnings against the Republican tax cut legislation. (She also dismissed tax relief as “crumbs,” so figure that contradiction out.) Pelosi also predicted that it would be “very hard … to come back from this,” only serving to “take us further, more deeply into debt.” In fact, she said, the only way out would be to “raise taxes.” Well, as the months go by and the positive economic numbers continue to pour in, Pelosi and her fellow Democrats — not one of whom voted for the tax cuts — are being proved wrong and then some.

The Congressional Budget Office reports that in April the U.S. posted its largest monthly budget surplus on record. As Bloomberg reports, “Receipts in April totaled $510 billion, about 12 percent more than the same period last year, while outlays increased by 8.4 percent to $296 billion, the Treasury Department said Thursday in its monthly budget statement. The monthly surplus was $214 billion, the highest in records dating to 1968.”

And why all this increase in government revenue after the tax cuts? Simple economics. While it’s true that much of the revenue was derived from people paying their 2017 tax bills, there are also simply more people working now, which means more tax revenue for the government. Combine President Donald Trump’s aggressive deregulation with the Republican tax cut and voila! — a booming economy.

However, the bad news is that despite all this record tax revenue, the federal government is still running an overall budget deficit of $385 billion. As we have regularly noted, the government has a serious spending problem, to which the only real solution is actually cutting spending, not simply limiting the amount of annual budget increases and passing it off as a “cut.”

Back to Pelosi and the Democrats, they may want to rethink their plans to campaign against the GOP’s tax cut. Investor’s Business Daily notes that the latest IBD/TIPP Poll’s Quality of Life Index “reached a 14-year high in April. And since the tax cuts went into effect, the IBD/TIPP Economic Optimism Index has averaged 54.7 (anything above 50 is optimistic). That’s well above the 17-year average of 49.4. In President Obama’s last year in office, it averaged just 48.6.” With news like this, Democrats’ “blue wave” come November may prove to be little more than a ripple.

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Freed Prisoners Set Stage for Trump-Kim Summit

In the wee hours of the morning Thursday, President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence welcomed home three U.S. citizens — Kim Hak-song, Kim Dong-chul and Kim Sang-duk — who had just been freed from prison in North Korea. And Trump didn’t make a $1.7 billion ransom payment or trade five enemy fighters to secure this release either. No, the Barack Obama style of diplomacy is in the past, even if he did win the Nobel Peace Prize for accomplishing nothing.

Naturally, the scene was marked by Leftmedia efforts to cast this diplomatic victory in the most negative light possible. The Associated Press actually complained that Trump violated “a practice of trying to protect potentially traumatized victims from being thrust into the spotlight so soon after an ordeal.”

In any case, the release set the stage for the upcoming summit between Trump and North Korean dictator (and Chinese puppet) Kim Jong-un. “The highly anticipated meeting between Kim Jong Un and myself will take place in Singapore on June 12th,” Trump announced after welcoming the prisoners home. “We will both try to make it a very special moment for World Peace!” He added, “I think we have a very good chance of doing something very meaningful. My proudest achievement will be … when we denuclearize that entire peninsula.”

Much of the world is expressing hope and wonder that Trump may be on the threshold of not only ending North Korea’s nuclear threat peacefully but also finally brokering an official end to the Korean War. But not everyone is pleased. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) would only offer a pessimistic disclaimer, grousing on the Senate floor, “I worry that this president, in his eagerness to strike a deal and get the acclaim and a photo op, will strike a quick one and a bad one, not a strong one, not a lasting one.” In other words, he doesn’t want his political opponent to get a win even if it means ending a significant threat to world peace. Talk about partisanship.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in expressed a much more optimistic tone, stating, “We welcome the North Korea-U.S. summit. … We hope the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula as well as permanent peace on the peninsula will successfully come about through this summit.” There are high hopes indeed. We’ll soon see if Trump the dealmaker is truly as up to the task as it seems.

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Top Headlines

For more of today’s news, visit Patriot Headline Report.

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FEATURED ANALYSIS

Motherhood: More Than a Full-Time Job

Michael Swartz

Often taken for granted by the children (and men) in their lives — at least until those children need something — mothers deserve our thanks more than just once a year. But with Mother’s Day upon us, we noticed various media outlets reminding us about a study by the Welch’s fruit juice conglomerate that came out last summer. It shows just how hard moms work at pleasing the rest of us:

The study of 2,000 American mothers with children ages 5 to 12 aimed to discover the useful tools, resources and techniques moms use to keep their lives and their family’s lives afloat. Their most astounding finding: the average working mom clocks in a 98-hour work week, with her day typically starting at 6:23 a.m. She doesn’t end up finishing her work or family duties until 8:31 p.m., meaning she works 14 hours per day.

Is this self-reported study the most scientific of surveys? Probably not. Are husbands and fathers going to argue with the results? Maybe, but in that case we hope the couch is comfortable.

Kidding aside, the venerable institution of motherhood has been under assault for decades, as those who chose to stay home and raise their children became “old-fashioned” outsiders in our modern culture. Paradoxically, the Baby Boom ushered in an era in which working mothers became far more common — either as part of a two-income family trying to keep up with the Joneses, or as a single mom raising her children without a father but with full responsibility for feeding and clothing them. It may get easier as the children grow up, making a job outside the home a piece of cake by comparison, but regardless of whether she also works outside the home, a mother’s work is never done.

Mothers have also become pawns in the political struggle over the so-called wage gap. This oft-cited “truth” that women earn less than 80 cents for every dollar a man is paid doesn’t account for the satisfaction derived during those periods one study euphemistically called “a temporary interruption” in their careers. Some in the more radical “equal pay” community call this phenomenon a “motherhood penalty.”

One solution to this is for employers to more flexibly account for moms’ desire for part-time work.

But in any case, with regard to this “motherhood penalty,” writer Hadley Heath Manning, a relatively recent addition to the working-mom sisterhood, noted: The term “depicts mothers as helpless victims and ignores the tremendous benefits of motherhood that women often choose to embrace in exchange for lower pay.” She prefers to think of these intangibles in terms of trade-offs. The time that a mom forgoes in the bubble bath because her daughter needs help with her homework is offset by the sense of pride she eventually feels in raising her to responsible adulthood. And that time spent tending to a son’s skinned knee allows her that little bit of bonding time she wouldn’t get if it happened at daycare while she was at work. While Mom may be tired after her long hours, it’s moments like these that keep her going.

As the men in our humble shop consider our wives and mothers, the words of Proverbs 31:28-29 come to mind: “Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: ‘Many women have done excellently, but you surpass them all.’”

Wishing our moms and yours a Happy Mother’s Day!

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TODAY’S MEME

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For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.

TODAY’S CARTOON

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For more of today’s top cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.

MORE ANALYSIS FROM THE PATRIOT POST

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.

OPINION IN BRIEF

Mona Charen: “Today, feminists are grappling with the long roster of supposedly ‘enlightened,’ i.e., feminist, men who’ve turned out to be serial abusers or worse. … Why are feminists more despairing about these revelations concerning liberal men than conservative women are about equally ugly stories concerning conservative men? The answer, I’d suggest, is that liberals tend to believe that one’s politics and one’s morality are the same thing. If you hold the correct views about abortion, the minimum wage, women’s equality, gay marriage and guns, it means not just that you agree with me but that you are a good person. A man who champions the #MeToo movement would never hurt a woman, right? There is some mirror imaging on the Right. Some conservative women are stunned to discover that men they thought were adherents of traditional morality turn out to be louts and even rapists. A key conservative insight is that character is a matter of behavior, not professed beliefs. Judge people by their conduct, not their branding. How do you mold decent conduct? Conscientious parents who teach right from wrong and a culture that reinforces those lessons. The feminists helped to weaken some of the mores and institutions that tended to control male lust and abuse. At the time, they thought they were fighting an unjust ‘double standard,’ but the sexual revolution damaged all standards, and we continue to sift through the fallout.”

SHORT CUTS

Insight: “Every prudent and cautious judge … will remember, that his duty and his business is, not to make the law, but to interpret and apply it.” —James Wilson (1742-1798)

For the record: “The Iran Deal in tatters, three American hostages safely returned from North Korea, which now offers to denuclearize and end the Korean War after 68 years, five top ISIS leaders captured — and that’s just this week.” —Michael Knowles

Change we can actually believe in: “I honestly believe this president is doing something that is nothing short of a miracle.” —Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK)

Pleasant fellow: “You will go to hell with your failures. … This man’s corpse will also be worm food while IRI stands strong.” —Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Donald Trump

Braying Jackass: “Shut up and take your medicine. Act like a man, for heaven’s sake. Every president takes criticism.” —CNN political analyst Brian Karem

Gross hyperbole: “If you are okay with waterboarding … I think that is psychotic. What’s next? Are we going to be like ISIS and chop people’s heads off?” —Meghan McCain

The world’s got a fever, and the only prescription is … population control? “What’s the one thing to do about climate change, if you want to think about the big picture? Raise the standard of living of girls and women. When you raise the standard of living of girls and women, they have fewer kids, and the kids they have are better cared for.” —Bill “The Science Lie” Nye

And last… “I guarantee you [the three U.S. citizens freed from North Korea] will not be taking a knee during our national anthem!” —Gary Bauer

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Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis

Nate Jackson, Managing Editor
Mark Alexander, Publisher

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