April 12, 2014

The Nevada Ranch Standoff (See Exit Question and Updates)

Graphic of the Day, via Matt Hurley, concerning the Bundy Ranch standoff, in which the Bureau of Land Management has backed downfor now:


Well, the problem is that this isn’t our federal government.

It’s the Washington establishment’s federal government, in this case attempting to benefit the family and cronies of U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.


- Dana Loesch (“The Real Story Behind The Bundy Ranch Harassment”; links are in original and bolds are mine throughout this post) —

A tortoise isn’t the reason why BLM is harassing a 67 year-old rancher. They want his land. The tortoise wasn’t of concern when Harry Reid worked BLM to literally change the boundaries of the tortoise’s habitat to accommodate the development of his top donor, Harvey Whittemore. Whittemore was convicted of illegal campaign contributions to Senator Reid. Reid’s former senior adviser is now the head of BLM. Reid is accused of using the new BLM chief as a puppet to control Nevada land (already over 84% of which is owned by the federal government) and pay back special interests. BLM has proven that they’ve a situational concern for the desert tortoise as they’ve had no problem waiving their rules concerning wind or solar power development. Clearly these developments have vastly affected a tortoise habitat more than a century-old, quasi-homesteading grazing area. If only Clive Bundy were a big Reid donor.

BLM has also tried to argue that the rules have changed, long after Bundy claims he secured rights and paid his dues to Clark County, Nevada.

*UPDATE: Those who say Bundy is a “deadbeat” are making inaccurate claims. Bundy has in fact paid fees to Clark County, Nevada in an arrangement pre-dating the BLM. The BLM arrived much later, changed the details of the setup without consulting with Bundy — or any other rancher — and then began systematically driving out cattle and ranchers. Bundy refused to pay BLM, especially after they demanded he reduce his heard’s head count down to a level that would not sustain his ranch. Bundy OWNS the water and forage rights to this land. He paid for these rights. He built fences, established water ways, and constructed roads with his own money, with the approval of Nevada and BLM. When BLM started using his fees to run him off the land and harassing him, he ceased paying. So should BLM reimburse him for managing the land and for the confiscation of his water and forage rights?

Cliven Bundy’s problem isn’t that he didn’t pay — he did — or that his cattle bother tortoises — they don’t — it’s that he’s not a Reid donor.

- InfoWars (“Sen. Harry Reid Behind BLM Land Grab of Bundy Ranch”) —

The Bureau of Land Management, whose director was Sen. Harry Reid’s (D-Nev.) former senior adviser, has purged documents from its web site stating that the agency wants Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy’s cattle off of the land his family has worked for over 140 years in order to make way for solar panel power stations.

FreeRepublic activists have preserved them here and have posted them in the comments (spread through several web pages).

- The standoff story, per Infowars (“Feds Back Down In New Bundy Standoff, Agree to Release Cattle”) —

In an epic standoff that Infowars reporter David Knight described as being like “something out of a movie,” supporters of Nevada cattle rancher Cliven Bundy advanced on a position held by BLM agents despite threats that they would be shot at, eventually forcing BLM feds to release 100 cattle that had been stolen from Bundy as part of a land grab dispute that threatened to escalate into a Waco-style confrontation.

Despite the fact that Bureau of Land Management officials agreed to cease their operation to seize Bundy’s cattle after a massive public backlash, Bundy demanded that Sheriff Douglas Gillespie disarm BLM officials and return his stolen cows.

When this didn’t happen, hundreds of Bundy supporters, including cowboys on horseback, descended on a nearby cattle pen outside of Mesquite where the seized cows were being held.

In a tense standoff, armed BLM feds, backed up by at least one SWAT team, threatened to shoot at Bundy supporters if they marched any closer to a line of vehicles.

Despite threats such as “one more step and you’re dead,” the protesters continued their slow march towards BLM agents as bullhorns blared.

Refusing to back down, the protesters marched straight past the armed men and towards the cattle pen.

Sheriff Gillespie eventually appeared to inform Bundy supporters that the BLM had finally caved and agreed to release the 100 cattle they had seized that were inside the pen.

After around 30 minutes, Bundy supporters saw the cattle being released about a mile away in the distance.

It cannot be overstated how much of a gargantuan victory this represents for the American people in their battle against big government tyranny.

“The people have the power when they unite,” Ammon Bundy told the Las Vegas Review Journal. “The war has just begun.”

I understand the exhiliration and am impressed and heartened by the courage of those involved, but this is no “gargantuan victory.” It’s more like an opening skirmish — and not just at Cliven Bundy’s ranch. The government is surely recalibrating its strategies, there and elsewhere.

Special kudos go to Matt Drudge, who took the risk of citing stories originating from so-called “fringe” sites (some of the leading lights of the center-right blogosphere did not cover themselves with glory in this regard).

Make no mistake: This standoff ended when it did because Harry Reid cannot afford to let his cronyism get widely exposed, which was certainly going to happen if it had lasted into Monday. Perhaps it still will, but establishment press resistance and attempted ridicule will be substantial.

EXIT QUESTION: Does anyone still believe that the Constitution’s Second Amendment isn’t as much about citizens defending themselves against an out-of-control government as it is about the natural-law right of self-defense?


UPDATE, April 13: Received an email from a trustworthy source claiming that “the number of citizens who WOULD have shown up at the Bundy ranch in Nevada during the standoff, and the number of eyewitness reports about federal abuses on the way would have been overwhelming if the feds had not illegally blocked their travel.”

UPDATE 2, April 13: Jerome Corsi“REID SMELLING ANYTHING BUT ROSY IN RANCH FIGHT; Desert showdown blows lid off long-standing plans with Chinese”

March 25, 2014

Crappy Common Core Problem of the Day (See Updates)

Prediction: If Common Core stands, a generation from now we’re going to think of today as “the good old days” when high school grads at least functioned on what had been an 8th grade level in the 1950s, and college grads had 1950s-level high school literacy.

Presented with “solving” garbage problems like the one illustrated below, today’s kids are going to come out of high school and college as blithering idiots — and kudos to the anonymous parent who pushed back (HT The Blaze):


Common Core’s crap must be stopped.


UPDATE: This is not a joke“Kid misses Common Core math problems because he didn’t use ‘friendly’ numbers”

UPDATE 2, 11:55 p.m.: Via the Blaze, the father involved has been identified and has good news to report —

Many would be afraid the school would retaliate against their child if they spoke out, but (Jeff) Severt said on The Glenn Beck Program Tuesday that the teacher handled it wonderfully.

“The teachers are caught up in this themselves,” he said. “They are more frustrated than the parents!”

Severt added that his family respects, admires, and supports the teacher, and she thought his message was “great” and, in fact, “totally agrees.”

Well how about we do something about it?

March 19, 2014

Out of Control Education System Column of the Day

From Michelle Malkin’s latest column:

Revolt Against the Testing Tyrants

… College-bound students in Orange County, Fla., for example, now take a total of 234 standardized diagnostic, benchmark and achievement tests from kindergarten through 12th grade. Reading instructor Brian Trutschel calculated that a typical 10th-grade English class will be disrupted 65 out of 180 school days this year alone for mandatory tests required by the state and district.

Parents, teachers and administrators are fed up with Fed Ed. There’s a growing grassroots movement — left, right and center — to opt out of this latest battery of assessments. Last week, the Worcester, Mass., school board voted to allow parents to opt out of PARCC field tests and keep their kids in regular classroom instruction. The Norfolk, Mass., school board did the same in January. Colorado State Board of Education Chairman Paul Lundeen has called on the state legislature to repeal the PARCC testing requirement.

The testing tyrants, of course, are doing everything they can to stop parents from protecting their children: deceive, bully, intimidate and obfuscate.

Bottom line: No child in America is legally required to be a part of the latest Common Core lab-rat testing experiments. You are your kids’ primary educational provider and decider. You have the power to flunk the latest Fed Ed testing boondoggles. Use it.

It’s time to invoke the left’s “Dissent is patriotic” credo in defense of our kids’ and grandkids’ well-being and the nation’s future.

January 22, 2014

Family Values Point of the Day

Filed under: Quotes, Etc. of the Day,Scams — Tom @ 2:59 pm

From James Taranto at the Wall Street Journal’s Best of the Web:

As it turns out, for Wendy Davis marriage really was the answer to poverty.


December 12, 2013

Quote of the Day: On Obamacare

In a Wall Street Journal editorial:

HHS is trying to conjure the appearance of progress and specificity even as it conceals everything that is relevant to ObamaCare’s performance.

November 5, 2013

Obamacare Headline Pair of the Day

Lord, have mercy:

  • At NewsBusters“White House Granted Itself Waiver to Launch ObamaCare Website With High Security Risk” (the source story’s headline at CBS News, “HealthCare.gov ducked final security requirements before launch,” obfuscates  and downplays the matter’s seriousness — deliberately, in my opinion)
  • At CNS News“White House Admits All Obamacare Signups Must Go Through Healthcare.gov.” That’s paper or online.

So EVERYONE is vulnerable to whatever security shortcomings may exist — including the ones we already know of and ones yet to be found — regardless of how they apply.

If a private company did this, consumers and the government would put it out of business with litigation and court orders.

September 9, 2013

Jaw-Dropper of the Day (Update: Susan Rice Gets to Make the Case)

Link (Delayed HT: frequent commenter dscott):

Congress Members Who Have Seen Classified Evidence About Syria Say It Fails to Prove Anything
Classified Syria Intelligence Fails to Prove Assad Used Chemical Weapons

The administration’s public case for chemical weapons use by the Syrian government is extremely weak, and former high-level intelligence officers say that publicly-available information proves that the Syrian government likely did not carry out the chemical weapons attacks.


… the Daily Caller reports:

The Obama administration has selectively used intelligence to justify military strikes on Syria, former military officers with access to the original intelligence reports say, in a manner that goes far beyond what critics charged the Bush administration of doing in the run-up to the 2003 Iraq war.

The once “unthinkable” (except by a very few of us who have thought this for at least five years) — that, in Instapundit’s words, Obama might be “Wrecking our foreign policy on purpose” — now has to be considered plausible. Norman Podhoretz at the Wall Street Journal certainly believes that it is:

Obama’s Successful Foreign Failure
The president may look incompetent on Syria. But his behavior fits his strategy to weaken America abroad.

My take last week (BizzyBlog mirror) on why Obama decided to go to Congress for an unnecessary authorization vote fits that template.


UPDATE: Also consistent

How Not to Win Over Congress
Sending Susan Rice, on the Benghazi anniversary, to argue for Syria is one of many missteps.

So the person who serially lied about the relevance of a previously virtually unknown anti-Muslim film as what caused the Benghazi terrorist attack is now the face of the administration before Congress.

If Obama really cared about winning over Congress, he’d send someone else. Instead, in-your-face defiance and one-upping his perceived enemies is more important.

Point of the Day: At Heritage

Filed under: Health Care,Quotes, Etc. of the Day,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 10:23 am

From its “Morning Bell” blog (“10 Ways Obamacare Isn’t Working”):

In the end, Nancy Pelosi was wrong. Congress passed the bill, but we still don’t know what’s in it—because the Obama Administration keeps changing rules and ignoring the law. That’s why Congress should use its power of the purse and stop a single dime from being spent on this unworkable, unfair, and unpopular measure.

For at least the 10 reasons cited at the post, Obamacare is working out to be an exercise in tyranny (“arbitrary or unrestrained exercise of power; despotic abuse of authority”).

That’s why it must be defunded.

July 17, 2013

Bernanke’s ‘If We Were to Tighten, the Economy Would Tank’ Comment Ignored by AP, Politico, and Others

Today, as the wire service AFP reported in a story carried at Yahoo.com, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, in the question and answer exchange after his prepared testimony, told the House Financial Services Committee that “If we were to tighten (monetary) policy, the economy would tank.”

That assessment of the economy’s fragility qualifies as news, especially given the Obama administration’s continued claim that the economy is “continuing to recover at a promising rate.” Outlets besides AFP virtually ignored Bernanke’s soundbite which should be considered scary to anyone who realizes that Big Ben can’t go on “stimulating” at his current rate forever.


July 16, 2013

Ted Nugent Nails It (With a Clarification)

Filed under: 2nd Amendment,Activism,Quotes, Etc. of the Day — Tom @ 1:25 pm

The final three paragraphs of “Zimmerman verdict vindicates citizen patrols, self-defense” (HT to a frequent emailer):

Martin Luther King Jr. is rolling over in his grave that he sacrificed his life for the cause of judging people by the content of their character instead of the color of their skin, as so many of his own race carry in self-destructive behavior while professional race mongers blame everything on racism. It is painful and heartbreaking to say and write this, but horrifically it is true. Blacks kill more blacks in a weekend in Chicago than the evil, vile Ku Klux Klan idiots did in 50 years. (*) Truly earth shattering insane. And not a peep from Obama or Holder. Tragic.

The only racism on that night was perpetrated by Trayvon Martin, and everybody knows it.

Here’s the lesson from all this, America: Teach your children to not attack people for no good reason whatsoever. Conduct yourself in a responsible, civil manner, and everything will be just fine. Try to kill someone and that someone just may be exercising his or her Second Amendment rights and you could get shot. It’s called self-defense, and it is the oldest, strongest and most righteous instinct and God-given right known to man.

Read the whole thing.

(*) – Clarification: The Klan is said to be responsible for having “killed 3,446 blacks over 86 years, yet black-on-black murders (in the U.S.) surpass that number every six months” (i.e., over 130 per week).

Reviewing the history, Wikipedia lists 18 blacks who were killed by Klansmen in the past 50 years — 12 from 1963-1966 (including Medgar Evers, who was killed in June 1963, technically more than 50 years ago), and six others, five in one incident, from 1979-1981. Wiki claims that the 1960s murders were “among the most notorious,” allowing for the possibility that there were others (though I doubt there were more than a very few). It does not make that claim about periods thereafter.

During the Fourth of July weekend this year, Chicago had 12 murders among 72 shootings (assuming no other subsequent deaths among those who were shot and still alive on July 8). It’s clear that almost all of the murders were black-on-black in nature.

To be completely correct, Nugent should have written that “Blacks have killed more blacks on some weekends in Chicago than the evil, vile Ku Klux Klan idiots have in the past 46 years.”

There have been several weekends in the past several years during which Chicago’s black-on-black murder toll has been greater than seven or more. In 2012, Chicago had more than 500 homicides, the vast majority of which were black-on-black — an average of almost 10 per week.

Nugent’s less than perfect rendering of the history hardly detracts from the points made in his column.

July 15, 2013

Instapundit Destroys NAACP’s Ben Jealous’s ‘Stand Your Ground’ Nonsense

Filed under: Quotes, Etc. of the Day,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 11:00 am

From late last night (HT Twitchy):


Homer Plessy was the plaintiff in Plessy v. Ferguson, the horrible 1896 Supreme Court decision which legalized racially segregated facilities with the euphemism of “separate but equal” in the South.

July 5, 2013

Cavuto on ObamaCare: ‘Champions of ObamaCare hid the real costs’

Since a frequent tipster informed me of an epic rant by Fox News’s Neil Cavuto on Monday, I’ve been waiting for it to appear on YouTube.

It hasn’t, so I’m going to transcribe it and link readers to the Fox News video. Keep in mind that Cavuto said all of this before the Obama administration’s cynical, politically opportunistic, and arguably illegal (as if that matters any more) announcement that it would delay imposing the employer mandate for a year until January 1, 2015, while forcing everyone to have health insurance or pay a fine starting six months from now:

We are paying more for health insurance when they said we would be paying less.

We are signing up fewer for the health care law when they said we would be signing up more.

The uninsured who still don’t want it.

The low-wage workers who still can’t afford it.

The doctors who are sick of being doctors because of it.

The fit who are having fits because they still will end up paying more even if they are fit.

The full-time workers made part-time workers because their bosses couldn’t afford their coverage.

The part-time workers who became former workers because they couldn’t afford losing that coverage.

The specialists who say their specialty suddenly isn’t so special.

The surgeons bailing out of their profession because it’s just not worth the hassle.

Oh yeah, and everybody else, who just can’t seem to afford the hassle.

A Wall Street Journal study out today that details premiums doubling, even tripling, and soon — even for those practicing preventive behavior, prevented from getting any break for that behavior.

Who knew in this remake of healthcare (that) slugs would rule, and the fit would drool?

The government knew. That’s who knew.

The votes touting who not only knew it, but hid from all of us the very real costs of it.

Nancy Pelosi was no dummy. She HAD read the bill. She DID know what was inside that bill — just like Max Baucus did, just like Harry Reid did.

But the fix was already in, and those soaring premiums are already on.

But then again, these champions of healthcare chose their words very carefully at the time, didn’t they?

After all, President Obama himself always said that you could keep your own doctor. What he did not say, was that you would end up paying through the nose for the privilege.

And the great healtcare system we once enjoyed, the one we upended for the 90 percent of us who were happy to cover the 10 percent who apparently still are not happy — well, stick a syringe in it. It is gone.

But first, bend over. Because this is gonna hurt.

Well, the message from the administration’s employer mandate delay may be, could be, and should be, “Maybe the health system we had, the one which needs serious reform but in a free-market direction, isn’t gone — not if those opposed to it summon the courage to save it and fix it.”

June 17, 2013

Victor Davis Hanson: ‘The New American Enemies List’

Filed under: Quotes, Etc. of the Day,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 10:33 am

At PJ Media:

Ask who now is sitting in prison — a shyster video-maker who had nothing to do with the deaths of four Americans, or their five known terrorist killers lounging about in North Africa? Apparently, Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, like EPA director Lisa Jackson, was guilty of creating a fake persona. Like Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, he had a lien on his business. Like former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, he had some unpaid taxes. Like Tamerlan Tsarnaev, he had been visited by government investigators. Like Attorney General Eric Holder and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, he lied to federal authorities — although they were not quite as high as those in the U.S. Congress. And unlike all of the above, he was therefore jailed.

Of all the legacies of Barack Obama, the most pernicious will be the creation of a rogue government that has cut off and terrified half the population — and for no other reason than that they seem to represent things that Mr. Obama simply does not seem to understand.

I’ll beg to differ on the second excerpted paragraph. Obama understands them — and despises them.

May 14, 2013

Anecdote of the Day

Filed under: Activism,Quotes, Etc. of the Day,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:59 am

You take your humor and joy where you can these days.

This anecdote was relayed to me in an email on the obviously very serious topic of IRS harassment of Tea Party, conservative, and other groups:

There is a TEA Party Group in Ohio that told the IRS that they had a book club. The IRS demanded that they tell them every book their book club read and provide a book report on each book! (I am not kidding. You can not make this up!)

The woman with the group told me that she sent them the actual books and told them to read them themselves! You go girl!

May 9, 2013

Quote of the Day: Rush on Obama, Hillary Clinton and Benghazi



  • From yesterday’s hearing, via the Washington Examiner (HT Hot Air) — “The YouTube video was a non-event in Libya”
  • CBS News“Official: We knew Benghazi was a terrorist attack ‘from the get-go’”

And please, let’s not forget how the Associated Press allowed the truth to appear ever so briefly (13 days after foreign outlets reported it) and then obscured it:

  • Oct, 10, 2012 — “AP Slaps Boring Headline on Story Regarding Major Admission by State Dept. on Benghazi Consulate Attack”
  • Oct. 11, 2012 — “AP Reports Still Fixate on ‘Anti-Islam Video,’ Leave Impression That There Were Pre-Attack Protests in Benghazi”