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Friday, November 28, 2014

Moe Lauzier’s

Issues of the Day

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transgender_signMessage to Cleveland Women: There's a Man in Your Bathroom… Get Used to It!

By Michael F. Haverluck,

Women and men in the city of Cleveland will soon be charged with $1,000 criminal fines for voicing a problem or discomfort about a person of the opposite sex using their restrooms. This also goes for businesses that express customers’ uneasiness over a person of the opposite sex visiting the inappropriate (or non-traditional) restroom. Cleveland schools must abide by the ordinance.
Cleveland’s recently proposed and reviewed “transgender-inclusion bathroom and locker room ordinance” is not the first of its kind, as Houston and numerous other cities have also visited or enforced measures that award local residents the special right to use whatever facility they choose, regardless of their natural gender.
City officials behind the new law argue that those opposed to the ordinance need to wake up and adjust to the so-called going trend of society.
As key sponsors of the “public accommodations” section of the legislation affecting private businesses, Councilmen Matt Zone and Joe Cimperman stress that the new law was created to grant transgender people the choice to visit any restroom they choose to cater to whatever whim they have — regarding their gender identity issues.
"This is common sense legislation, and it's long overdue," Zone asserted, noting that the ordinance does not mandate businesses to provide separate restroom or locker room facilities or signs warning unsuspecting visitors. "We're in the 21st century, and it would allow Clevelanders to feel comfortable in their own environment and to use facilities that they're most comfortable with."
Family Research Council (FRC), a pro-family Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit organization is perplexed by Zone’s blanket statement that Clevelanders in general need to feel “comfortable” by allowing them to enter any restroom they choose, pointing out that transgenders constitute a miniscule fraction of city dwellers.
“Exactly which Clevelanders is he talking about?” FRC asks. “The 99 percent of locals who would have to forfeit their personal safety and First Amendment rights to comply? Or the less than 1 percent of sexually confused people who are dictating ‘morality’ to the rest?”
Nonetheless, many city officials are on board with the councilmen’s mindset, believing dissenters to be archaic and irrational.
“We have to get out of the mindset that someone is going into the bathroom to attack,” a city leader retorted when responding to fears expressed by Clevelanders who voiced concerns about the ordinance opening the door for sexual predators of all types throughout the city.
Another argument used by city leaders advocating the new law is that dozens of other cities have enacted similar controversial ordinances, alleging that pedophiles, voyeurs and other sexual predators have rarely abused the laws.
Public outrage and concern
Under the transgender ordinance, many are shocked to learn that any person or business restricting restrooms to one gender will be issued a $1,000 criminal fine. One author put it another way:
"So if a woman is alone in a business and sees some guy follow her into the restroom — and you know this will start to happen — and she screams and makes a huge fuss to draw attention to the male invading her privacy, SHE is the one who will get slapped with a $1000 fine?" a concerned author voiced over the problematic law. "How about a privacy-respecting business owner who listens to his or her female customers? Or the grandmas who stand at the door of the public pools — with pitchforks, perhaps — to keep pedophiles out of the showers with their eight-year-old granddaughters?"
FRC emphasizes how serious the proposed ordinance is and reminds women, parents and children alike that their rights as Ohioans would be violated by the controversial law. Other conservative watchdog groups defending Judeo-Christian values agree, stressing that the main issue at hand is the well-being and protection of vulnerable citizens — particularly women and children.
“All can agree that the safety of children and women must always come first,” the Cincinnati, Ohio-based organization Citizens for Community Values said in a statement. “This proposed ordinance outrageously neglects the safety and physical and emotional health of women and children and opens up real possibilities of predators and incidents of rape, assault, public exposure and other sexual abuse.”
On the other hand, promoters of the ordinance, including Alana Jochum of the pro-LGBT group, Equality Ohio, tries to put tensions at ease by insisting that anyone entering a restroom with the malice intent to harass or harm an occupant would still be liable for obstructing the law. She insists that Cleveland’s transgender restroom law would merely give transgenders the right to pick and choose the restroom that makes them feel the safest. However, no mention was given as to what would make straight women and children feel the safest.
"A transwoman who is forced to enter a male restroom is subject to a much greater safety risk than if she uses the restroom she most identifies with," Jochum said in defense of the ordinance.
The debate goes on …
Last week kicked off the first of a number of meetings held by the Cleveland City Council, which continues to push the ordinance that would make every public restroom and shower — including those found in private businesses and schools — to be freely accessible by all men and women citywide.
The transgender restroom and locker room ordinance discussed at the city’s Workforce and Community Benefits Committee meeting is just one in a bundle of ordinances under review that are being proposed to “update” Cleveland’s current anti-discrimination laws, which now seek to embrace the transgender community by handing them special rights.

mike_rogersHouse Intelligence Committee Benghazi Report Defies Logic

Boston Herald

In a head-scratching attempt to muddy the truth, the Republican-led House Intelligence Committee has released an investigative report absolving Washington -- the Obama administration, the State Department and the CIA -- of any wrongdoing in their response to the deadly 2012 terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi.
The stunning new report claims that no one told the CIA security contractors stationed in the nearby annex to "stand down."
This is in stark contrast to statements made by three CIA security contractors who have said in interviews and their best-selling book they were told to stand down or wait three times -- orders that delayed them and cost Sean Smith and Ambassador Chris Stevens their lives on Sept. 11, 2012.
"The House Intelligence Committee report claiming there was no stand down order is incomprehensible," said one of those CIA contractors, former Army Ranger Kris Paronto, in a statement to the Herald. "Especially when I looked Rep. Mike Rogers right in the eye when he asked me during questioning if a stand down order was given. I said 'yes,' and told him that had we not been delayed, we would have been able to save Ambassador Stevens' and Sean Smith's lives."
The report also says that there were no intelligence failures related to the attack that killed four Americans -- an assertion that defies both fact and reason.
Ambassador Stevens, citing growing terrorist concerns, requested additional security several times months before the attack, which was ignored by Hillary Clinton and the State Department she was responsible for overseeing.
Which begs the question: What good is it to provide intelligence if it's ignored?
And, in the months leading up to Benghazi, the Red Cross and the British had been attacked by terrorists, prompting both to shut down their facilities in Benghazi and send their personnel home. That provided both the State Department and the White House with ample "intelligence" that the U.S. consulate in Benghazi was unsafe, surrounded by dangerous terrorists, and required additional security for U.S. personnel stationed there.
The report claims there were no intelligence failures but also says that Susan Rice was given conflicting information from intelligence analysts in the aftermath of the attack. Well which is it?
The report can't say there wasn't an intelligence failure and then let Susan Rice use intelligence "failures" as an excuse for lying to the American people on the Sunday talk shows.
What America knows is that during the 13-hour terrorist attack, Hillary Clinton, President Obama and high-ranking members of our government didn't answer that 3 a.m. call. They did not dispatch military backup to protect Ambassador Stevens, American personnel stationed in Benghazi or the six American security contractors who risked their lives to save the lives of at least 20 others that night.
They were all hung out to dry.
After six years of the Obama administration's incompetence and scandals, our faith in getting the truth lies not with the government, but with our brave military and private citizens.
Congressman Trey Gowdy's Select Committee on Benghazi investigation is still underway. Let's hope he's able to shed light on what happened once and for all. The victims and their families deserve both justice and the truth.
Adriana Cohen is a columnist for the Boston Herald and a co-host of "Trending Now." Visit and follow her on Twitter @AdrianaCohen16.

MichaelBrownMotherMichael Brown’s Mother Under Investigation – a Story You Haven’t Seen in the Liberal Media

It is one of the strangest and most reprehensible developments yet in the ongoing controversy around the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson, Missouri. The New York Daily News reports that the young man’s mother, Leslie McSpadden, is now being investigated and may be charged with felony armed robbery. McSpadden and a group of other people are being accused of violently attacking a second group who were selling “Justice for Mike Brown” merchandise. That group included McSpadden’s own mother, Pearlie Gordon.
The Daily News article explains:
The Ferguson Police Department is currently investigating claims that Lesley McSpadden brought a group of people… to beat vendors and rob them of their “Justice for Mike Brown” merchandise.
Gordon, 54, was allegedly knocked to the ground and repeatedly struck in the head. She detailed the brief exchange she had with McSpadden at the time of the attack.
“You can’t sell this s**t,” McSpadden allegedly said, according to the report.
Gordon responded that “unless McSpadden could produce documentation stating that she had a patent on her son’s name” (Gordon) was going to continue to sell her merchandise.
In addition to Brown’s grandmother, Pearlie Gordon, reports indicated an unidentified person was beaten with a pipe, and another was hospitalized. A police report says more than $1,500 in merchandise was stolen, along with $400 in cash.
This bit of insight into the culture of Michael Brown’s family is disturbing. Was Leslie McSpadden upset because her son’s name was being exploited, or did she want to control who could profit from his story? Equally distressing is the idea of his own grandmother making money from what was certainly a tragic loss to this family. Certainly we are seeing a willingness on the part of this family to solve their problems with violence.
Now the question is, will we see this story in the Liberal media?

The “Most Favored Nation” Approach in America’s Immigration Policy

65% H-1Bs from India, 86% of EB-5s from China

Although the national-origins quotas for immigration were ended in the 1960s, a new report by the Center for Immigration Studies finds that certain categories of visas have come to be dominated by people from a specific country.

David North, a Fellow at the Center, analyzes seven of the many specialty migration streams that have an unusual concentration of migrants by nation of origin. All but one of the categories examined is ostensibly for temporary migration.  

View the entire report at:

The highlighted visas and countries reveal unusual concentrations of migrants in specific categories, including:  India, with 65 percent of the global H-1B visas (high tech); Mexico with 91 percent of H-2A visas (farm); Mexico with 78 percent of H-2B visas (non-farm); China with 86 percent of EB-5 visas (investors); Dominican Republic with 49 percent its nonimmigrant worker admissions being of P-1 baseball players;  Haiti with 50 percent of its non-immigrant worker admissions being “culturally unique” artists/entertainers; andTurkey with large numbers of its  H-1B nonimmigrant worker admissions being teachers of the Turkish language in tax-supported U.S. high schools.

“The extremely steady flow of Indian high-tech workers receiving the H-1B visas to enter the United States is the largest and most controversial of the one country dominated streams,"  said North. “Noting the extremely high unemployment rate in the United States, it is shocking that an estimated 900,000 H-1B visas holders are presently employed in the country, an estimated 585,000 of these are from India. Interestingly, the government has never even tried to estimate the total size of the resident H-1B population.”

DoD renames “unlawful combatants” in detainee manual to …


In fact, captured terrorists went out of style a long time ago, so that’s not the actual change. Until recently — like, say, two weeks ago — the Department of Defense used the term unlawful combatant as the label for terrorists captured by American military and intelligence forces as a way to distinguish them from uniformed soldiers of a recognized state authority in a straight-up fight. Their new manual dispenses with that term, the Federation of American Scientists noticed today (via Steven Aftergood and Olivier Knox):
When it comes to Department of Defense doctrine on military treatment of detained persons, “unlawful enemy combatants” are a thing of the past. That term has been retired and replaced by “unprivileged enemy belligerents” in a new revision of Joint Publication 3-13 on Detainee Operations, dated November 13, 2014.
The manual even has this helpful chart for readers:
The only actual mention of the previous term comes in the Summary of Changes on page iii, which notes that the revision “[r]evises terminology, taxonomy, and definitions for unlawful enemy combatant, unprivileged belligerent, detainee, and detainee operations.” There is no particular explanation for why unlawful combatant no longer suffices, or why “unprivileged” makes for a clearer understanding between the categories of legitimate POW and everyone else.
So what’s going on here? Political correctness run amok, like saying there’s no such thing as an unlawful person? A way to reinforce the idea of “privilege”? No, not really — or at least not on the DoD’s behalf. If anyone’s to blame for the blandification of nomenclature … it’s Congress. The new revision to the DoD manual brings the terminology in line with 10 U.S. Code § 948a, which provides definitions for detainee policies rewritten by Congress to refine the military-commission process. It provides a very precise definition of the two classes of belligerents:
(6) Privileged belligerent.— The term “privileged belligerent” means an individual belonging to one of the eight categories enumerated in Article 4 of the Geneva Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War.
(7) Unprivileged enemy belligerent.— The term “unprivileged enemy belligerent” means an individual (other than a privileged belligerent) who—
(A) has engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners;
(B) has purposefully and materially supported hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners; or
(C) was a part of al Qaeda at the time of the alleged offense under this chapter.
This section goes back to the Military Commissions Act of 2006, sponsored by Mitch McConnell, but the new terms were introduced in the 111th Congress in the NDAA for 2009. It passed in October 2009 and was signed a few days later by President Obama. The only contemporaneous discussion of this change I could find in a quick search was by Joanne Mariner at Findlaw, who dismissed it as “cosmetic.” Another change was somewhat more substantial:
The new law begins by tweaking the definition of individuals eligible for trial before military commissions — most obviously by scrapping the phrase “unlawful enemy combatant,” and replacing it with “unprivileged enemy belligerent.” This is a cosmetic change, not a real improvement, which mirrors the administration’s decision to drop the enemy combatant formula in habeas litigation at Guantanamo Bay.
In addition, the new definition sets out three separate grounds on which a person might be deemed an “unprivileged enemy belligerent,” which vary somewhat from the grounds for eligibility included in the previous definition. The third ground, now separate from the previous two, is membership in Al Qaeda, whether or not the member has engaged in or supported hostilities against the US. (Under the previous definition, membership in “Al Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces” was relevant to the determination of whether a person had engaged in or supported hostilities, but was not itself a distinct ground for eligibility.)
Notably, the Taliban is no longer specifically named in the new definition. This suggests, perhaps, that the administration is acknowledging a meaningful difference between the Taliban and Al Qaeda, and wants to leave open, at least for the future, the possibility that the Taliban is not the enemy.
That might seem a little more notable in the wake of the Bowe Bergdahl swap. It’s possible that this could provide the White House a way to press for the release of more Taliban detainees from Guantanamo Bay, but it would be a tendentious and silly argument. Publicly, the administration has argued that the risk from their release has disappeared by now, which is their main and most effective argument, even if experience has clearly proven it to be untrue — which we’ve known for years.
At any rate, the new nomenclature seems pretty silly, and the need to change from unlawful combatant non-existent. Don’t blame the Department of Defense for it, although we can certainly wonder why it took them five years to catch up to the changes (and what may have prompted the recent action). That silliness comes from one of America’s great resources of silliness and meaningless redefinitions of perfectly suitable language — from your elected officials on Capitol Hill. On the plus side, we can now ask terrorists to check their unprivilege as they enter the detention system, or something.

ClintonHillary Clinton charged $300k for UCLA speech, demanded crudité and diet ginger ale

By Kellan Howell - The Washington Times - Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton charged $300,000 to speak to students and faculty at University of California Los Angeles in March, even after school officials tried to negotiate the deal.
According to new documents obtained by the Washington Post under the Freedom of Information Act, the school asked for a reduced rate for public universities, but Mrs. Clinton’s representatives said that $300,000 was the “special university rate.”

The documents show that planning for Mrs. Clinton’s appearances took over a year, and that representatives managed everything from the size of pillows on armchairs used on stage to the multiple teleprompters requested for the lecture hall.

“She uses a lavalier [microphone] and will both speak from the audience and walk around stage, TED talk style. We need a teleprompter and 2-3 downstage scrolling monitors [for] her to read from,” UCLA administrator Patricia Lippert told The Washington Post.

E-mails show that Mrs. Clinton’s team rejected the podium selected for her use at the UCLA event, sending school officials scrambling to find a more suitable podium and rent a new university seal to match.

Mrs. Clinton’s representatives requested “Coffee, tea, room temp sparkling and still water, diet ginger ale, crudité, hummus and sliced fruit” for the green room, according to The Washington Post.

Gruber: I’ll testify in Oversight hearing


It looks like Darrell Issa’s tenure at the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee will end with a bang, not a whimper. Issa requested testimony from controversial ObamaCare architect Jonathan Gruber at a hearing in two weeks, but it seemed far from clear that the MIT professor would agree. According to the committee’s spokesperson, though, Gruber has RSVP’d in the affirmative:
Jonathan Gruber, the former ObamaCare adviser in hot water for his comments about the “stupidity of the American voter,” has agreed to testify at a House panel next month, setting up a healthcare showdown in what could be the final week of this Congress.
The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee will also hear from Obama administration official Marilyn Tavenner, who is under fire this week for using inflated enrollment figures for the healthcare law.
“Both Mr. Gruber and Administrator Tavenner have agreed to testify,” committee spokeswoman Caitlin Carroll told The Hill.
The “invitation” went out late last week, so it appears Gruber didn’t hesitate to respond. That seems curious, especially since it wasn’t really necessary. Gruber could have forced Issa to get a subpoena, which Issa may have tried, but time is running out on this session and a subpoena vote may have used up what little time was left for Oversight to meet. Gruber might have gotten a pass from Jason Chaffetz, who will chair the committee in the next session, but that’s not a good bet. Besides, if Gruber’s as smart as he obviously considers himself, perhaps he thinks he’ll have no problem handling the rubes he tried to fool the first time around.
Or, perhaps, Gruber just wants to tell a few truths about ObamaCare now that the cat’s out of the bag. He can start with how the Obama administration kept promising lower premiums while he was telling Democrats that more than half of Americans would see premiums spike under their plans:
While President Obama campaigned on a promise that his universal health care plan would lower premiums, his controversial adviser and plan architect was privately warning the state of Wisconsin that Obamacare was poised to massively increase insurance costs for average residents, internal documents show.
Jonathan Gruber, the MIT economist currently under fire for suggesting the Obama administration tried to deceive the public about the Affordable Care Act, was hired by former Democratic Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle in 2010 to conduct an analysis on how the federal health-care reform would impact the state.
Mr. Gruber’s study predicted about 90 percent of individuals without employer-sponsored or public insurance would see their premiums spike by an average of 41 percent. Once tax subsidies were factored in, about 60 percent of those in the individual market were projected to see their premiums go up 31 percent, according to his analysis.
In addition, 53 percent of those insured by companies with fewer than 50 employees, would see their premiums rise by an average of 15 percent even after subsidies, Mr. Gruber forecasted. The report warned such increases could impact small companies’ decision whether to provide health insurance to their workers.
Makes one wonder exactly what kind of consultation HHS got for its $400,000 it paid Gruber, eh? Don’t ask Kathleen Sebelius, who ran the agency that paid Gruber almost the same amount of money the President gets for a year of work. Despite all of that money going to Gruber, Sebelius says that she never worked with Gruber “personally,” and that ObamaCare is still the most open process for a law evah. Gruber’s lying about lying, y’all:
Former Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius called comments from Jonathan Gruber on the “stupidity of the American voter” regarding passage of the President’s signature health care law “totally offensive” and said she never worked with Gruber “personally” though he worked “with a number of our agencies.”
Sebelius made her comments Monday after appearing on CNN, saying that the MIT economist was not an “architect” of Obamacare, as some have suggested, but agreed that he could be considered one by osmosis given his role in drafting the Massachusetts health care law that she said served as a “template” for Obamacare.
But Gruber’s comments that the Obama administration misled voters couldn’t be further from the truth, she said.
“You couldn’t have debated this more. It couldn’t have been more open,” Sebelius said, echoing comments President Barack Obama made after videos of Gruber surfaced online this month.

Chris Cuomo points out that the back end of the ObamaCare health-exchange system still doesn’t work, and wonders exactly how that can be the case more than four years after the passage of ObamaCare. Sebelius says she never personally worked with the back end, although it did work with several agencies … oh, wait, that’s Gruber. Instead, Sebelius comes up with an odd claim that the back end actually has been built, but that they didn’t want to use it for this year’s open enrollment period, even though that’s the most important application for it.
But they’re open and honest. Rrrrrrrrrrright.

Don't blame Chuck Hagel: Obama's foreign policy has been a disaster from end to end
The ousted secretary of Defense makes a convenient scapegoat. But Obama should be pointing the finger at himself.

After just one year and nine months, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is out, and shouldering much of the blame for the president's foreign policy with his "resignation."
But canning Hagel won't help. The problems with President Obama's foreign policy have almost nothing to do with Chuck Hagel. Sources close to Hagel suggest that the Nebraskan realist mostly carried out orders from above, and only differed from the president in more quickly realizing that the Islamic State could constitute a threat to U.S. interests. In that, Hagel was right.
Obama partially owes his election to the difference he drew between himself and George W. Bush's foreign policy. Instead of a status of forces agreement in Iraq, he sought to wash his hands of his predecessor's "distraction," so that he could focus on a surge in Afghanistan.
Six years in, Obama has returned to Iraq's Sunni Triangle, fighting an air war against an amorphous, multi-state terror force that gobbles up U.S. materiel, whether it is provided by thecorrupt stumblebum Iraqi army or shambolic anti-ISIS fighters. Ground troops are back on the table. Having focused on Afghanistan, Obama has managed to accomplish not much at all. Just as under Bush, the American effort in Afghanistan has meant that there is a U.S.-dependent government in Kabul — and just an hour away the Taliban govern as before, and wait and plot for when the U.S. finally tires and leaves Kabul for them, too.
Obama's longed-for intervention against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad came to nought when the British Parliament refused to join his teensy coalition of the willing. But once the conflict in Syria became a multi-dimensional civil war with constantly shifting alliances, Obama finally decided to barge in.
It's not just that Obama is dealing with the fallout from Bush's disaster. Persuaded by the ebullient chest-mane of Bernard-Henri Levy and the weakness of the Gadhafi regime in Libya, Obama put American fingerprints on the stateless chaos that followed that regime's downfall. Since then, America has had its ambassador killed, its diplomatic mission has retreated to Malta, and Malta has withdrawn its own diplomats. No one knows which government controls which parts of Libya, and ISIS-affiliated groups are thriving there as well. The instability has also wrecked nearby Mali.
The Obama administration's whole response to the Arab Spring has been confused. Hope for a liberal democratic Egypt, after the U.S. cut loose its subsidized strongman, was replaced by a dysfunctional Muslim Brotherhood government, then a barely functioning return to rule by the military. The Iran nuclear talks have stalled. In a sign of total exasperation, Obama and Secretary John Kerry indulged in a silly bit of allegiance-harming name-calling with Israel.
And it isn't just the Middle East. Russia and the U.S. should have a basis for a productive relationship, if a limited one. Both nations are concerned with Islamist terrorism, often from groups operating in the same region. Both want to see China's rise managed productively and peacefully. But there has been little common ground following Russia's move into eastern Ukraine, which only made the Obama administration's "reset" with Vladimir Putin seem remarkably naive.
Chuck Hagel is simply not responsible for the bulk of this, cut off as he was from most of the real decision-making done in the White House.
American re-involvement in Iraq. The rise of the Islamic State between Syria and the Sunni Triangle. A failed state in Libya, and struggling Mali and Egypt. An isolated Kabul and a chuckling Taliban. Sore relations with Russia. Putin in the Ukraine. A deteriorating relationship with Israel. Not to mention the expansion of the drone program, the broken promise of closing Guantanamo, and domestic spying. So far the great foreign policy achievement of this administration is that the Irish are slowly phasing out a corporate tax loophole.
But sure, blame Hagel.

G’ day…
Ciao…….Moe Lauzier

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