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Republican lame-duck session priorities should be the wall, tax cuts, and defunding Planned Parenthood

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Republican lame-duck session priorities should be the wall tax cuts and defunding Planned Parenthood

Lame-duck sessions in Congress are abominable. When many members of the voting body are no longer accountable to voters because they’re leaving, that’s usually the worst time to be pushing legislation. But when the lame-duck session precedes a power change, it’s the final opportunity for a party to make an impact. When the opportunity is fleeting, you take it. That’s politics.

Unfortunately, many Republicans on Capitol Hill seem reluctant to get their act together and push conservative initiatives while they still have time. Mitch McConnell wants to push through more judicial nominees. Why? Because it’s a popular move to the base. They love hearing about more originalists confirmed to the various courts of the land.

This is ludicrous. They don’t need the House to confirm nominees and their Senate majority will be larger next session. There’s absolutely no good reason for McConnell to be pushing confirmations during the lame-duck other than solidifying his reputation as a confirmation king. I’ll acknowledge he’s been very effective so far with judges, but he can be just as effective doing it next year. Instead, he’s squandering time and efforts on it now.

The other big time-waster is the bipartisan criminal justice reform bill, the First Step Act. If it’s bipartisan, it can be passed when the Democrats take control of the House in January. Why in the world would that be a top priority during the lame-duck session? It’s not a slam dunk among Republicans with a handful wanting public debate that will cost them precious time. If it can pass in the future, they need to put it off until then.

Don’t even get me started on the Mueller “protection” bill. Even if we ignore the Constitutional ambiguities associated with it, we can’t ignore the fact that outbound Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) is the one pushing for it from the Republican side. His threat? Holding up confirmations. McConnell’s response should be, “go for it.”

The judges can be confirmed on the other side of the break.

What should Republicans be doing over the next 2-3 weeks? First, they need to get their priorities straight. Then, they need to inform everyone that Christmas break is on hold until they get their agenda complete. Longer hours and working weekends are required.

Does that sound too harsh ahead of Christmas? Boo hoo. These are representatives who have done such a foul job while they had control of both chambers of Congress that one of those chambers was taken away from them. They screwed up the last two years despite a small handful of victories, and now they want to rush home to be with their families. I have no sympathy for them. Do your jobs. Set your priorities and get to work.

Here are those priorities. There should be more, but we can’t expect so much from the incompetent band on Capitol Hill. Keep it simple and they might be able to get it done.

Priorities during lame-duck session

Senator Ted Cruz seems to be one of the only Republicans calling for conservative measures to be taken before they lose control of the House. He’s absolutely right and has listed many things he’d like to see accomplished before they go home for the rest of the year.

We can’t expect them to get many things done, but at the very least they need to do these three things:

Fund the wall. Period.

Heck, if they can do this I’d actually be only mildly upset if they missed everything else.

Here’s the reality. If they do not fund the wall now, there is zero chance soon-to-be Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi will do anything but laugh at funding it in the future. This is the last chance for the next two years at least.

Fund the wall. President Trump has threatened to shut down the government if they don’t. Let’s not test him. Just fund the damn wall like you promised through two elections now..

Cut taxes again

They did it once. They can do it again. It worked the first time. It’ll work again. This should be a no-brainer, unless somehow they believe Pelosi has changed. She’s never seen a tax she thought was too high.

Stop using taxpayer dollars to murder preborn babies or fund Democrats’ election campaigns

The federal dollars given to Planned Parenthood aren’t allocated for abortions or giving money to Democratic election campaigns. Those dollars come from different accounting lines.

Guess what. If they defund Planned Parenthood, that money will get replaced by funds that currently go towards killing preborn babies and funding Democrats. It may not be direct funding, but the source of this dollar going to that part of Planned Parenthood is all basic accounting tricks.

Just like the wall and tax cuts, Republicans will not have another chance at defunding Planned Parenthood for at least two years if they don’t do it now.

If the GOP would stop doing the things they can do next year and focus on the things they can only do while they still have control, then maybe they can make an impact. As of now, they’re acting like they’re ready to throw in the towel.

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Economy

The 1751 machine that made everything

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The 1751 machine that made everything

A short video on how technological innovation born of economic liberty has changed the world.

History is more than dates, places and battles. In many instances it’s technological advances that change the world for the betterment of all mankind. In this case it’s the story of French inventor Jacques de Vaucanson and his creation in France of the first all metal slide rest lathe, the forerunner to all modern machine tools in 1751.

Lathes had been around for centuries, but lacked the precision with hand held cutting tools. The slide rest of the Vaucanson metal lathe that provided the control to produce metal part of exacting dimensions. The lathe is said to be able to produce every other machine and machine tool. This advancement changed everything.

The producer of the video references a profound chart of World Population GCP and per Capita GCP 1 –2008 AD from data of the late Angus Maddison, similar to this produced by the  Visual Capitalist, we credit them for the chart and commentary:
Image Credit: Visual Capitalist

 

For thousands of years, economic progress was largely linear and linked to population growth. Without machines or technological innovations, one person could only produce so much with their time and resources.

More recently, innovations in technology and energy allowed the “hockey stick” effect to come into play.

The video was produced by Machine Thinking last year.

While some may quibble about which particular machine produced this miracle The larger point is that the machines of the industrial age profoundly changed what people could produce.

As the video noted the average person in 1600 was no better off economically than someone thousands of years earlier. This is what is called the Malthusian trap and for seven thousand years, it was inescapable no matter what we did.

Machine tools such as this changed all of that, one person could produce what had taken many. This surplus could outpace births, allowing the economy to grow at an incredible pace as seen in the chart. All from the genius of the mind undergirded by the Economic liberty of the free-enterprise system. This is why this is vastly superior to the societal slavery of socialism.

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Economy

Colion Noir: Exposing the under the table business of homelessness in San Francisco

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Colion Noir Exposing the under the table business of homelessness in San Francisco

Anyone who has walked the streets of San Francisco in the last few years was likely shocked. Unless they came from Seattle or a similar city in which homelessness and drug abuse are rampant on the downtown streets, it was likely a wake up call to anyone seeing how big the problems have become.

For a city with such extreme wealth and both historically and thanks to the Silicon Valley boom, it can be perplexing to witness how little is done to help those who need it so desperately. As we noted before, for some reason San Francisco is so “woke” yet so blind at the same time.

This video by Colion Noir exposes the ugly truth about San Francisco, that no matter how much money is pumped in by tax payers, the hyper-leftist radical progressive government that runs the city is incapable of solving these problems. It’s noteworthy that some of the people Noir talked to called for less government, including one gentleman who believed anarchy was the only thing that can solve the problem completely.

Yes, the city that is known for imposing the largest amounts and most obtuse overreaches of government is the city that seems to be imploding despite an overabundance of tax dollars flowing in. If there is any better testament to the failures that would befall the entire country if socialism is ever implemented more than it already is today, I’m unaware of what city that could be.

San Francisco is a disaster, yet they continue to depend on progressive leadership to somehow fix what they’ve continuously broken for decades.

Not only is the cover up intentional, as Colion Noir concluded, but the system that keeps homelessness and drug abuse prevalent on the streets is intentional. Dealing with poverty for San Francisco’s bourgeoisie is a political industry.

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Economy

Washington has America standing on the precipice of a fiscal abyss

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Washington has America standing on the precipice of a fiscal abyss

Yesterday was Tax Day, an annual reminder that our tax-and-spend government continues to get taxier and spendier.

Fox News is reporting that Donald Trump will be holding campaign events across the country this week to do some damage control in the wake of his unpopular tax cuts, but the destruction being caused by Washington’s spending addiction should be the real headline for Tax Day 2019.

Although, to be fair, many faux conservative media sources have their hands full right now pushing McConnell’s “vote Republican because #notSocialist” 2020 campaign rhetoric, so we shouldn’t be surprised if they’re too busy to be bothered with something as petty as the inevitable bankruptcy of America.

In a report issued last week by the Government Accountability Office titled “The Nation’s Fiscal Health: Action is Needed to Address the Federal Government’s Fiscal Future,” we were provided with an update on the nation’s fiscal health at the end of FY 2018 and what lies ahead if fiscal policy isn’t changed.

Some of the findings included in the report are:

  • The federal government’s current fiscal path is unsustainable
  • The federal deficit increased to $779 billion — and will reach $1 trillion in the next few years for the first time since 2012
  • Publicly held debt was 78% of GDP at the end of FY 2018 and will surpass its historical high of 106% within 13 to 20 years — sooner than projected last year
  • Other agencies join GAO in saying that the longer action is delayed, the greater and more drastic the changes will have to be

Graphic shows 4 projections of debt increasing

Alexis de Tocqueville, the French legal and political scholar, politician, and historian who is most known as the author of the book Democracy in America (pub 1835 – 1840), has been attributed for this quote: “The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public’s money.”

Whether these are the words of de Tocqueville or not is irrelevant. The reality is they are 100% true as we are witnessing in Washington today.

With Republicans and Democrats always in election-season mode, policies are decided based on how they affect political parties instead of America’s needs. This has given birth to finding new and better ways for them to buy votes, and it’s why we’re seeing Democrats promoting socialist ideas like Medicare for all, paid family leave, and the Green New Deal heading into 2020.

However, despite claims to the contrary, Trump and the GOP are actively pursuing the same socialist programs as they join the Democrats in a scramble to find ways to buy votes.

After decades of taxing and spending, growing the federal government, and pursuing a socialist Utopia, America finds herself on the precipice of a financial abyss with little reason to hope the unibrow party in Washington will save her. In fact, they’re likely to push her over the edge … if it means they can get a vote out of it.

Originally posted on StridentConservative.com.

 


David Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative. His daily radio commentary is distributed by the Salem Radio Network and is heard on stations across America.

Follow the Strident Conservative on Twitter and Facebook.

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