American Elephants


YouTube Just Censored a Video Criticizing Censorship! by The Elephant's Child

YouTube has just censored a video criticizing censorship.  Yes, the one just below titled “the Dark Art of Political Intimidation.”

Beginning in 2010, the IRS intentionally targeted conservative nonprofit groups and delayed approving their tax-exempt non-profit status an attempt to render them politically impotent during the 2012 election, Strassel explains.

In Wisconsin, a Democratic prosecutor went after conservatives in a shadow campaign finance investigation. The real reason for the pre-dawn raids on conservative activists’ homes and the subsequent gag orders legally compelling them to stay quiet about it all were to enact revenge for their support of Republican Gov. Scott Walker, she says.

These are two of several examples she highlights in this five-minute-long video decrying censorship of one’s political opponents, which YouTube decided to censor by placing it on “restricted mode.”It’s common for schools and parents to place their YouTube account on restricted mode to keep obscene or graphic content away from children. But PragerU’s videos, including the aforementioned one about censorship, are G-rated, so it’s unclear why the video platform is placing these videos on the naughty list.

Goodness, don’t let children see the short educational videos that Prager University creates. Here’s a list of the naughty and salacious videos from which children must be protected. Sound scary?

The Dark Art of Political Intimidation
Are The Police Racist?
Why Don’t Feminists Fight for Muslim Women?
Why Did America Fight the Korean War?
Who’s More Pro-Choice: Europe or America?
What ISIS Wants
Why Are There Still Palestinian Refugees?
Islamic Terror: What Muslim Americans Can Do
Did Bush Lie About Iraq?
Who NOT to Vote For
Don’t Judge Blacks Differently
Israel: The World’s Most Moral Army
Radical Islam: The Most Dangerous Ideology
The Most Important Question About Abortion
Why Do People Become Islamic Extremists?
What is the University Diversity Scam?
He Wants You
Israel’s Legal Founding
Pakistan: Can Sharia and Freedom Coexist?

YouTube is a Google company. Google had many subsidiaries, and last year reorganized with the parent company becoming Alphabet Inc.  Visit Wikipedia.org and search for Alphabet Inc.

According to Wikipedia, Larry Page, Google CEO, said that “the establishment of Alphabet was prompted by a desire to make the core Google Internet services business “cleaner and more accountable” while allowing greater autonomy to group companies that operate in businesses other than internet services.”

A new study from SEO Competitive Analysis Company CanIRank finds that, confirming many conservatives suspicions, Google searches favor left-wing content.

It finds that top search results are almost 40 percent more likely to contain pages with a “Left” or “Far Left” slant than they are to contain pages from the right. Searchers are 65 percent more likely to encounter liberal search results than conservative search results among the five first returns to their inquiry.

Moreover, 16 percent of political keywords contain no right-leaning pages at all within the first page of results.

Are these findings the result of politically neutral rules for determining which results appear first? The study concludes they are not.

Google highlights two key determinants for ranking content: (1) the number and quality of links pointing to a page and (2) the content (i.e., relevancy and comprehensiveness). According to the study, pages demonstrating a left or far left political slant made it into the top results with significantly fewer external links compared to pages rated balanced. And pages with a right-leaning slant needed still more links to make it into the top results.

In the case of actual content, conservative websites were more comprehensive, which they measured by number of words, yet they were less highly ranked. The study also considered the secondary factors in Google ranking. Both sides of the  political spectrum agreed on where sites ranked in the study. Google appears to be biased towards the left. Voters get much of their information from search engines about elections and campaigns. This is not a minor thing, though many of us know to just keep going down the list until we reach a reliable website.

Go here to sign the petition to Stop YouTube from Blocking Prager U Videos.



The Washington State Ballot Makes National News, for some Surprisingly Dumb Issues by The Elephant's Child

vennwastate

Washington State voters have just received their ballots and the Voter’s Guide. It tells you something when we have already made the national news. The above Venn Diagram comes from economist Mark Perry, writing at AEI.

Over at the Wall Street Journal, we got a full article on “The SEIU’s Ballot Fraud:  The union tries to hoodwink voters into protecting its dues.”

That’s the story in Washington state, where the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is funding a ballot measure that advertises itself as the Seniors and Vulnerable Individuals’ Safety and Financial Crimes Prevention Act. What the ballot measure would really do is prevent home-care workers from being informed that they have the right to opt out of the union.

In Harris v. Quinn in 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that home-care workers have a First Amendment right not to pay fees to a union they don’t wish to join. In Washington state the ruling was taken up by the Freedom Foundation, which sought to inform the members of two unions representing child-care and home health-care workers that they could opt out. …

Under the ballot measure, the Freedom Foundation or other outsiders would be blocked from obtaining the list of union members’ names. The unions know that when workers know they have a right not to pay union dues, they often don’t. According to the Freedom Foundation, of the roughly 7,000 unionized child-care providers notified by the Freedom Foundation, well over 60% have dropped their union membership.

National Review targeted the same ballot measure.

In Washington State, Unions Advance a Ballot Measure to Keep Members in the Dark.” It is disguised as a measure to protect the elderly from abuse but is simply an aggressive effort to keep home care providers from knowing that they don’t have to belong to the union, nor do they have to pay union dues.

Also on the ballot, but unaddressed at the national level is a state attempt to invalidate the (much hated by the Left) Supreme Court’s Citizen’s United decision, the aforementioned minimum wage issue,  a gun bill that attempts to remove guns from the mentally ill or depressed in an ineffective suicide prevention idea. And to top it all off, there’s an attempt to pass a carbon tax that would accomplish nothing, nothing at all, except an increase in taxes.

The Wall Street Journal also points out that “State government revenues have swelled 30% in the last five  years. That’s a bigger raise than most workers have received, but public unions and their friends are asking voters for more at the ballot box on November eighth.

So they are, and we should not give them a cent.



The Tipping Point! by The Elephant's Child

angry-public-meetingThere are a remarkable number of buzz-words being tossed wantonly around the media: nationalism, corruption, elitism, populism, reactionary, criminalization, Islamophobia, globalization, sexism, and of course—racism—that all-purpose word when clear thought goes haywire. How many of these epithets can you clearly define? Thought so, me neither.

Donald Trump has been quite precise about why he is running. He wants to Make America Great again, Great Big Wall,  deportation of criminal aliens, care for veterans, renegotiation of trade deals,  some very good ideas for economic growth, some not quite so much.

But why is Hillary running? Yes, yes, she wants to be the first woman president, but what precisely do we get out of it?

My understanding is that the American people are pretty angry about ObamaCare, and even more so now that they have announced an average 25% increase in cost. Obama has left our borders wide open and told the Border Patrol to pay no attention. Criminal aliens are not deported or come right back in. On top of that he is offering “asylum” to Syrian refugees, except that most of them aren’t Syrian, and we can’t tell where they’re from because Syrian passports are available cheap, and there is no government and nobody can be vetted.

There is a list of the reasons why one may ask for asylum. The very first reason is religion—if one fears persecution because of their religion, they may be admitted. Chopping off of heads and being burned alive or crucified would seem to qualify as persecution, but President Obama does not recognize Christians as being among those needing asylum.

Obama seems more interested in placing his asylum-seekers in strong Republican districts in the expectation that new immigrants will vote Democratic.

The American people are not anti-immigrant, they are anti-wide open borders. We have a great many people who have applied through the proper channels for American citizenship, and are parked on a years-long wait list, but those who cross our Southern border are instantly welcome.

The American people have noticed that construction, building and landscaping crews are mostly Mexican, while unemployed citizens cannot find jobs, and the media usually prattle on about jobs Americans won’t do. Criminal illegal aliens who have been deported previously return to commit more crimes.  Canada and Australia calmly admit those who offer some talent that will be useful to their countries.

The corruption in government has been so widespread that there is hardly an agency that has not had a major scandal—the EPA, the IRS, the VA, FBI, FDA, ACA, HSA, FEMA, DHS, DOJ and on and on. Yet no one is fired, nothing changes. Budgets that should be slashed are passed in omnibus bills and nothing is cut. Google “Federal acronyms” for a shocking display of the size and reach of the federal government, yet nothing is cut, nothing is ended, and Congress turns more and more of its assigned work of making laws and regulations over to the uncounted and unaccountable agencies.

The reasons that people are fed up are myriad. One person’s outrage may not phase another who is angry about something else entirely. America seems no longer the most powerful nation, but indecisive, pandering, weak.

The young communists of the Black Lives Matter movement are causing and encouraging riots and attacks on the Police, and they are invited to the White House.

We make a huge deal of new relations with Communist Cuba, without a single concession from the Castros, as a great accomplishment. And just what was the tipping point for you? Yet Obama remains more popular than either of our presidential candidates. Why?

I’m not at all sure that I understand this presidential campaign at all.



Some Ideas From Donald Trump About What Is to Be Done. by The Elephant's Child

static2-politico-comDonald Trump laid out his plans for his first 100 days in a speech in Gettysburg. He listed 28 points, some excellent, some not. Here are a few of the good ones, in no particular order. This is not to say there are not other good proposals, Here ‘s the entire list.

—Work with Congress on a Middle Class Tax Relief And Simplification Act.An economic plan designed to grow the economy 4% per year and create at least 25 million new jobs through massive tax reduction and simplification, in combination with trade reform, regulatory relief, and lifting the restrictions on American energy. The largest tax reductions are for the middle class. A middle-class family with 2 children will get a 35% tax cut. The current number of brackets will be reduced from 7 to 3, and tax forms will likewise be greatly simplified. The business rate will be lowered from 35 to 15 percent, and the trillions of dollars of American corporate money overseas can now be brought back at a 10 percent rate.

—Cancel all federal funding to Sanctuary Cities.

—Suspend immigration from terror-prone regions where vetting cannot safely occur. All vetting of people coming into our country will be considered extreme vetting.

—Institute a hiring freeze on all federal employees to reduce federal workforce through attrition (exempting military, public safety, and public health)

—Require for every new federal regulation, two existing regulations must be eliminated.

—Work with Congress on a Restoring National Security Act.Rebuilds our military by eliminating the defense sequester and expanding military investment; provides Veterans with the ability to receive public VA treatment or attend the private doctor of their choice; protects our vital infrastructure from cyber-attack; establishes new screening procedures for immigration to ensure those who are admitted to our country support our people and our values

—Cancel billions in payments to U.N. climate change programs and use the money to fix America’s water and environmental infrastructure.

—Work with Congress on a School Choice And Education Opportunity Act Redirects education dollars to gives parents the right to send their kid to the public, private, charter, magnet, religious or home school of their choice. Ends common core, brings education supervision to local communities. It expands vocational and technical education, and make 2 and 4-year college more affordable.

Here are Steven Hayward’s comments on the list. Term limits are perennially popular, but there are good and effective congressmen whom it would be a pity to lose, and we would never agree on who are the good ones and who are not. New members of Congress are not always particularly effective in their first term, and need to learn their way around.

The eliminate two regulations in order to add one is a gimmick. The Obama administration has added regulations in ridiculous numbers in the illusion that people in government know better than ordinary citizens. We need a far stronger way to eliminate them.

Give the list some attention. It makes you think about what is desirable and what is not, and where you stand. I think Mr. Trump is generally mistaken about trade. NAFTA has been very successful for all three countries.

The Trans-Pacific Partnership is not a useful venture—it’s making a common market of Pacific nations — and we should have learned from the EU that this is a very bad idea indeed. It essentially eliminates our borders and turns our sovereignty  over to an unaccountable international commission. The Left no longer believes in national sovereignty, a major point to keep in mind.

Government is too big, and tries to do too much. There are few things that are best done by the federal government, and even those are not well done. The nature of government employees is to believe that their expertise is what is needed to control the unruly deplorables out there, and they do way too much, make too many laws, pass too many regulations, have too many agencies and departments, and if we eliminated more than half of them, nobody would notice.



This Election Is Going To Have To Be Decided By the Voters. by The Elephant's Child

I liked this editorial from the New York Sun, I assume from the pen of Seth Lipsky. “It looks,” he wrote, “like this election is going to have to be decided by the voters.”

That has got to be infuriating to the press and the political elites. They have been trying, since the day Mr. Trump declared, to write off his candidacy as a folly. …

This difficulty arises from the central circumstance of this election. Mrs. Clinton keeps declaring for what she calls the “high road.” In her best moments, she is wonderfully warm and articulate. The ideology of the Democratic Party, however, has given us eight years of economic stagnation and veered us onto the road to socialism. The Democrats’ signature program, Obamacare, is in disarray, as is its foreign policy. Mrs. Clinton shares responsibility for both of these failures.

Mr. Trump keeps to what Mrs. Clinton calls the “low road,” but he is running on a more substantive – and more humane – platform of law and order, military strength, tax cuts, deregulation, and economic growth. The irony is that growth is better for minorities than the dole and subsidies that Mrs. Clinton promises. By creating jobs, economic growth is the only strategy that offers a solution to the immigration “problem.” It would create a climate in which we would need immigrants of all sorts.

The high road is not high enough to detour around the issues Donald Trump is raising. We don’t yet know where it will lead in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Coal Country, Colorado, Wisconsin, Florida, and the other swing states. It is exactly the sort of problem that requires millions of minds to decide. Mrs. Clinton might win, but the idea that she and the press could untangle this knot by declaring Mr. Trump simply unfit and without resort to the voters looks this morning to be hubristic.

The voters will decide, if Democrats do not succeed in getting millions of dead people to vote.



Words of Wisdom, Pertinent to the Day by The Elephant's Child

“The vision of the Left is not just a vision of the world. For many, it is also a vision of themselves—a very flattering vision of people trying to save the planet, rescue the exploited, create “social justice” and otherwise be on the side of the angels. This is an exalted vision that few are ready to give up, or to risk on a roll of the dice, which is what submitting it to the test of factual evidence amounts to. Maybe that is why there are so many fact-free arguments on the left, whether on gun control, minimum wages, or innumerable other issues—and why they react so viscerally to those who challenge their vision.”

Thomas Sowell, 1/22/2014, Front Page Magazine

“In contrast to America, countries like Canada and Australia treat immigration the way Harvard treats college admission or the New England Patriots treat the NFL draft as a way to get the talented that can benefit the institution and keep out the untalented. Here in America we increasingly treat immigration as if it were a sacred civil right possessed by 7 billion foreigners.”

William Voegeli: The Pity Party

“Once politics was about only a few things; today it is about nearly everything…Once the “legitimacy barrier” has fallen, political conflict takes a very different form. New programs need not await the advent of a crisis or an extraordinary majority, because no program is any longer “new”—it is seen, rather, as a extension, a modification, or an enlargement of something the government is already doing…Since there is virtually nothing the government has not tried to do, there is little it cannot be asked to do.”

James Q. Wilson,”American Politics, Then and Now” Commentary, Feb, 1979



The Clinton Lie Rachet: Bill Whittle by The Elephant's Child

Compulsive liars are interesting, but troubling. Were they liars as kids? I suspect so. Found they could lie to their parents and seldom got in trouble. Little lies are common, of course, oh yes this desert is delicious, and your new haircut is so stylish. But that has no relation to the compulsive liar. If you expect the truth and rely on it to make a decision or act upon it—you can be really harmed. Compulsive liars are dangerous;




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