Enough About Medicaid. What About the Rest of Us?

There is more to life than Medicaid.

D.C. conservatives say it’s the best Medicaid reform bill ever. Democrats and progressive Republicans say it’s a crippling cut to the poor and immoral. What nobody is talking about is the rest of the health care and health insurance market and how it is immoral to ensure than no middle-income family can live with dignity without unsustainable taxpayer support. Whatever we do or don’t do with Medicaid, why do we need to destroy the rest of the market for the debate over Medicaid? Why is nobody talking about healing the private market first?

Obamacare’s actuarily insolvent regulations and market-distorting exchanges and subsidies, built on top of existing government-sponsored distortions, destroyed health insurance in America and made health care unaffordable for all but the wealthy. That is a fact. That premiums have tripled in only the fourth year of implementation and that they will skyrocket thanks to only one or two insurers having a monopoly in most of the country is a reality before our eyes, not just a projection score from CBO. Why is nobody discussing ways to solve the private market crisis — repeal of Obamacare and enactment of free-market, supply-side health care reforms?

The supposed rationale for this arson of our health care system was the pursuit of universal coverage. But the reality is that 84 percent of all coverage increases came from Medicaid, not from the private insurance market. Even much of the remaining 16 percent increase since 2011 came from 1) Young individuals who never wanted insurance but were coerced into it by the individual mandate; 2) More people getting employer plans thanks to the recovering job market. Unemployment decreased from 10 percent to 4.3 percent; and 3) Individuals who are getting lavish subsidies but only need the subsidies because the Obamacare regulations made insurance unaffordable without them. Private insurance coverage for everyone older than 26 has actually decreased since enactment of Obamacare.

The remaining middle-income Americans and small business owners, thus, must suffer from crushing costs the size of another mortgage … for what?

Why did we have to destroy the entire market just to expand Medicaid?

A true compromise that will expose the duplicity of progressive Republicans and Democrats

To that end, here is my proposal to solve the problem and assuage the concerns of progressive Republicans while disarming the talking point of the left.

You want Medicaid expansion? Here, go have it. We won’t touch it at all. Go enjoy it. It’s all funny money anyway, and we have long since crossed the point of no return with the debt. As late as 1987, we spent just $27 billion on Medicaid; as late as 2008, we spent $200 billion on it; and now we spend close to $400 billion. The debate between the two sides is over whether we will spend $500 billion or $620 billion on Medicaid by 2026, both lowball estimates unless we actually solve the core problem and open up a free market in health care and health insurance. Plus, either way, the proposed “cuts” to Medicaid under the GOP plan will never occur, cannot occur given the dynamics of the rest of the bill, and are merely a talking point to get conservatives on board with maintaining the core of Obamacare.
Perforce, if this is the big reason why RINOs are having tantrums, let’s cede this issue, which will be ceded anyway, and demand repeal of the more critical elements of Obamacare in return.

In addition, let’s throw $200-$300 billion over 10 years at a federal high-risk pool that is structured like the “Maine model” to ensure insurers can’t bid up the price and make it an open-ended entitlement, but will deal with the remaining chronically ill who are not covered by other programs. This is more than enough to deal with the remaining people who aren’t on Medicare, Medicaid+expansion, SCHIP, VA, TRICARE, state programs, and existing state and federal programs for pre-existing conditions. Yes, we already spend $1.6 trillion on health care. Now, enough is enough.

Again, this is not my ideal plan, but we are going to spend this money anyway under every plan anyway. (For more from the author of “Enough About Medicaid. What About the Rest of Us?” please click HERE)

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The End of the (Petro)Dollar: What the Federal Reserve Doesn’t Want You to Know

The United States’ ability to maintain its influence over the rest of the world has been slowly diminishing. Since the petrodollar was established in 1971, U.S. currency has monopolized international trade through oil deals with the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and continuous military interventions. There is, however, growing opposition to the American standard, and it gained more support recently when several Gulf states suddenly blockaded Qatar, which they accused of funding terrorism.

Despite the mainstream narrative, there are several other reasons why Qatar is in the crosshairs. Over the past two years, it conducted over $86 billion worth of transactions in Chinese yuan and has signed other agreements with China that encourage further economic cooperation. Qatar also shares the world’s largest natural gas field with Iran, giving the two countries significant regional influence to expand their own trade deals.

Meanwhile, uncontrollable debt and political divisions in the United States are clear signs of vulnerability. The Chinese and Russians proactively set up alternative financial systems for countries looking to distance themselves from the Federal Reserve. After the IMF accepted the yuan into its basket of reserve currencies in October of last year, investors and economists finally started to pay attention. The economic power held by the Federal Reserve has been key in financing the American empire, but geopolitical changes are happening fast. The United States’ reputation has been tarnished by decades of undeclared wars, mass surveillance, and catastrophic foreign policy.

One of America’s best remaining assets is its military strength, but it’s useless without a strong economy to fund it. Rival coalitions like the BRICS nations aren’t challenging the established order head on and are instead opting to undermine its financial support. Qatar is just the latest country to take steps to bypass the U.S. dollar. Russia made headlines in 2016 when they started accepting payments in yuan and took over as China’s largest oil partner, stealing a huge market share from Saudi Arabia in the process. Iran also dropped the dollar earlier this year in response to President Trump’s travel ban. As the tide continues to turn against the petrodollar, eventually even our allies will start to question what best serves their own interests.

Many E.U. member states are clashing with the unelected leadership in Brussels over immigration, terrorism, and austerity measures. If no solutions are found and things deteriorate, other countries could potentially follow the U.K.’s lead and vote to leave, as well. It is starting to become obvious that countries in Eastern Europe will look to the East to get the resources their economies need.

China, Russia, and India are all ahead of the curve and started stockpiling gold years ago. They recognize that hard assets will be the measure of true wealth in the near future — not fiat money. The historic hyperinflation that has occurred in these countries solidified the importance of precious metals in their monetary systems. Unfortunately, most Americans are ignorant of the past and will likely embrace more government bailouts and money printing when faced with the next recession. Even Fed officials have admitted that more quantitative easing is likely the only path going forward.

Several renowned investors have warned about this ongoing shift of economic power from West to East, but bureaucrats and central bankers refuse to admit how serious things could get. The impact on the average person could be devastating if they are not properly educated and prepared for the fallout.

Economist and author James Rickards summarized why China and Russia are so interested in acquiring precious metals:

They are stuck with their dollars. They fear, rightly, that the US will inflate its way out of its $19 trillion mountain of debt. China’s solution is to buy gold. If dollar inflation emerges, China’s Treasury holdings will devalue, but the dollar price of its gold will soar. A large gold reserve is a prudent diversification. Russia’s motives are geopolitical. Gold is the model 21st century weapon for financial wars.The US controls dollar payments systems and, with help from European allies, can eject adversaries from the international payments system called Swift. Gold is immune to such assaults. Physical gold in your custody cannot be hacked, erased, or frozen. Moving gold is a simple way for Russia to settle accounts without US interference.

Mainstream pundits will continue to distract the public with the same optimistic talking points, but taking advantage of this calm before the storm is important. As this transition takes place, central bankers will sacrifice anything and everything to keep their Ponzi scheme going. Only individuals can take the initiative to protect themselves and be able to help others who won’t be as lucky. Those who embrace sound money and cryptocurrencies will thrive in this new competitive global economy, but if America fails to adapt, the same fiat system that gave it power will drag it into poverty. (For more from the author of “The End of the (Petro)Dollar: What the Federal Reserve Doesn’t Want You to Know” please click HERE)

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Democrats Need Only These 3 Things to Control the House in 2018

As we continue to wait for the Democrats actually to win something, it would be wise of Republicans not to get too cocky in response to the Left’s laughable “moral victories.” There absolutely is a path to the Democrats taking control of the House of Representatives in the 2018 midterms. It’s just a matter of whether they’re capable of implementing it. They may be, or they may not.

In fact, a Democrat House in 2018 is only these three easy steps away:

1. Dump Nancy Pelosi.

She’s unlikable, a career politician, scatter-brained, and from uber-left San Francisco. Other than that, she’s the perfect face for the Democratic Party — if you’re a GOP consultant. Seriously, if you’re a wary Republican in the uncertain age of Trump looking to concoct the perfect foil, the only thing Pelosi is missing is being a white male. But as the song goes that Trump likes to play at his rallies, you can’t always get what you want. However, if you try sometimes, you just might find you get what you need. And Republicans need Pelosi as a bogeyman to offset Trump’s scare value for Democrats, in what will be a turn-out-the-base election. As long as Pelosi is there to be the Republicans’ piñata, Paul Ryan will continue to be speaker of the House.

2. Stop talking/pursuing impeachment.

While dumping Pelosi is a necessary start, it doesn’t close the sale for Democrats. Sometimes in sports, a road environment is so raucous that it fires up the road team every bit as much as the home squad, thus creating a boomerang effect. This is what the issue of impeachment is for the Democrats.

Sure, it ignites the 15 percent of counties that voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016. But it also ignites the 85 percent of counties across the country that didn’t, too. So it’s a net loss for Democrats — a big one, especially since these are district and not statewide elections.

It’s no secret that Republicans are much better at campaigning on their platform than actually governing on it, which is why they’re always at war with their own base. However, the impeachment issue is so flammable that it will cause the GOP’s base problem to all but disappear. Democrats would be much wiser to let independent counsel Robert Mueller do his work, then sit back and see how the GOP navigates the choppy seas of what its corporatist donors want vs. the reforms its base desires.

3. The GOP passes a health care bill that doesn’t substantively cut the rising costs of premiums, but does cut Medicaid.

This would be like Republican leadership actually writing Democrats’ 2018 campaign commercials next year for them, and it appears as if the Republicans are hell-bent (literally) on doing exactly that. Attaching your brand to legislation that doesn’t immediately relieve consumers suffering under Obamacare, but then promises future cuts to a program originally established for poor folks, literally fulfills every Democrat talking point ever. That’s not even political malfeasance, but more like a political Jonestown for Republicans.

How likely is it that Democrats will wake up and carry out these first two easy steps? Until Democrats first confront the fact that they’re so far left they’re scaring the (literal) hell out of much of America, Republicans will escape many of the consequences of their own betrayals. (For more from the author of “Democrats Need Only These 3 Things to Control the House in 2018” please click HERE)

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Comment: “It’s a Shame More Republicans Weren’t Shot”

Five people were shot after a political attack against members of my government took place outside DC last week. A man asked if the people playing baseball were Republicans or Democrats. Then he started shooting.

When a professor at my state university recently painted Captain America holding up the severed head of my president, and then put that painting on display at the University of Alaska, we were reassured that the act itself was not an act of violence and that no one was hurt by it. He was simply channeling his grief at the outcome of the election.

When Americans were attacked and beat up for attending rallies in support of the man who is now our president, we could at least be reminded that it wasn’t armed conflict and that no one had been killed. Nothing to worry about, right?

Then a professor in the DC area declared to the world last month that Republicans in Congress, “should be lined up and shot. That’s not hyperbole…” Maybe he didn’t mean it, some said.

What do we tell ourselves now, after a man terrorized Americans at a baseball practice because he found their politics unacceptable? What do we tell ourselves after some responded to the attack, “Its’s a shame more Republicans weren’t shot”, a Democrat Party official in Nebraska declared publicly, “I’m glad he got shot. I wish he was f****ing dead.”, and the founder of a major liberal news site declared: “Republicans are getting what they want.”

Running for office is expected to have its share of challenges of course: public criticism, late nights, early mornings, time away from family, etc. But, excepting combat vets, the thought of getting shot at isn’t something most elected officials have ever had to wrestle with. Having people literally wanting you dead, and saying so publicly, isn’t something most elected officials have encountered throughout our nation’s history. In that, we have been blessed.

But something profound is happening in America today. A segment of our society has decided that it is not enough to disagree politically. Disagreements have always been with us, even profound ones. That is nothing new. What is new today is that some have abandoned resolving those disagreements without resorting to condemnation. Some in America have lost the capacity to let their personal ideas be challenged without seeing such challenges as a threat to their person, as a threat to their safety. While they are glad to publicly celebrate the defeat of their political opponents on Election Day, they need a “safe space” if one of their candidates loses. Their political opponents and those who would support them are so evil, that unprovoked violence against them is justified.

A college president in our neighboring state of Washington this week requested that state police help restore order on campus after a white professor insisted on teaching his class on a day when all white people were asked to leave campus. We have reached a very low point indeed, when the only way to avoid violence is to physically remove an entire race of people from an American college campus.

In political terms, we are witnessing what happens when Americans begin to lose trust in the ability of our political process to negotiate acceptable terms of peace between warring factions. In some countries, violence and threats of violence are how political differences are resolved. America was conceived in the idea that constitutional government, and an American’s right to free speech which it protects, provides an escape from such terrors. You see, freedom of speech doesn’t just protect the person speaking. In the end, it protects all of us, because it preserves the space necessary to communicate and resolve passionate, even offensive, disagreement.

Curtailing free speech, no matter how altruistic the motivation, deprives us of a critical tool in preventing violent political confrontation. Our nation’s founders were not ignorant of such conflict. They witnessed it in the years leading up to the American Revolution, and then over seven bloody years of armed conflict. They left us with many tools; a system of checks and balances, to slow and even pacify the rush to resolve political issues through violence and threatened violence.

Over the years, we have watched as many of those checks and balances have been frustrated, and as succeeding generations have received less and less training in a number of the tools that were at one time simply an assumed part of the American Experiment. As bizarre as it sounds, our laws no longer carry the force of law today. Our elected officials no longer feel bound by them as they once did. The growing fear that a judge or justice will step in to overturn a written law or the result of an election, for whatever reason, has hastened the erosion of confidence that everyday Americans still have in our laws, and in the political processes that determine what those laws will be.

Events like the attack last week, and the responses to it, confirm that our situation is most dire. While a civil war is not necessarily around the corner, we should recognize that we are already many steps down the path towards such a possibility. Now is not the time to simply comfort the survivors of these types of attacks. Yes, comfort survivors. Yes, recognize the heroism and bravery of those who intervene on their behalf and on behalf of others who would have become victims otherwise. But also ask yourself what actions we can take today to alter course and to recover the confidence in our political institutions that has been lost.

Loss of confidence is not simply a marketing problem. It will require more than an expensive PR campaign to restore that confidence. It will require fundamental reforms and the hard work to bring those reforms about. It will require sacrifice on the part of each of us. As President Reagan reminded the generation of his day, “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United State where men were free.” In the end, when our political institutions are working properly, they serve a valuable function: They provide our communities with tools to resolve the political differences that will always be with us—but only if those institutions are working properly. As Americans, it is our job to ensure that they are.

(For more from the author of “Comment: It’s a Shame More Republicans Weren’t Shot” please click HERE)

Rep. David Eastman is a conservative legislator in Alaska, representing the rural Mat-Su Valley (House District 10); He ran on a platform of fighting for genuine conservative reform, fiscally and socially, and remains committed to delivering on that promise.

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Antifa Leftists Are Completely Honest: They Want to Destroy You

If there remained any question about the character of the radical Left, recent reporting by Ian Miles Cheong at Heat Street paints a disturbing picture of the extent to which Antifa leftists condone violence against capitalists and so-called “fascists.”

Cheong draws attention to an Antifa website, “It’s Going Down,” the “de facto resource for anarchists and ‘anti-fascist’ activists currently engaging in sporadic street battles across the United States against Trump supporters and the government.” The website features Antifa articles from staff writers and anonymous submissions that give the reader insight into the demented minds of those who urge violence against their countrymen.

The literature of the anarchist leftists is honest in its presentation of who they are and what they want. “A library of downloadable publications on the website offers long-form articles that call for ‘insurrectionary mass resistance and refusal’ and asks moderate liberals to join arms with the far left,” Cheong informs us. “One describes liberal allies as ‘accomplices’ to capitalists. A piece titled Work, Community, Politics, War suggests that anarchists ‘are imposing our needs on society without debate’ and urge[s] militant tactics against employers and law enforcement.”

“Anarchism means destroying the forces that seek to keep us on our knees,” reads a publication titled “What the fuck is anarchism?” Cheong highlights how this piece exemplifies “the victim complex most of the leftist ideology’s followers live with.” You should read how they describe themselves and the actions they condone.

In a world full of alienation and apathy, anarchists are willing to act in accordance with their ideas. Anarchists are those who would set fire to a bulldozer or a new luxury home rather than let a forest be cut down, who would rather hear the sound of shattering glass than a politician’s speech. Deserting and disobeying all the rules written against us, by squatting and stealing for our survival, and rejecting the roles we’re assigned, as good worker, good student, good citizen, good woman or man. Rewriting the usual endings; by supporting prisoners rather than letting them disappear in isolation, by beating up rapists and homophobes rather than suffering their violence, by creating forms of love that only strengthen us rather than containing and limiting us. Taking control over our surroundings by painting graffiti on the walls or occupying space and planting gardens. By arming ourselves with the ability to create a new world and destroy the one that has been imposed on us.

This is the evil of Antifa. Their end is the destruction of the civil society. Their means are violence. And the Democratic Party and the “mainstream” liberals and progressives who support it have been complicit in the escalation of this violent politics.

For the good of the American people and the safety and happiness of our communities, the Antifa Left must be condemned and its violence put to an end. (For more from the author of “Antifa Leftists Are Completely Honest: They Want to Destroy You” please click HERE)

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HGTV Benham Bros. Agree, Bloodshed Is Coming to America

Bloodshed is coming to America, and it won’t be a response to oppression but the result of aggression – against God and our constitutional form of government.

The increasingly violent acts in our streets, town-hall meetings and university campuses are simply birth pangs for a greater upheaval that’s brewing hot – and it’s not by accident.

Although the narrative is that street protests and student uprisings are simply a response to Trump as president or guest speakers with conservative values, the truth is they are coordinated attacks resulting from a subversive anti-God, anti-American ideology that has indoctrinated our universities for more than 50 years . . .

Today, we are beginning to languish as a nation – and it’s high time we turn back to God . . .

Just as bloodshed is the result of turning away from God, liberty and freedom are His response when we turn back to Him. Let’s pray for this today. (Read more from “Bloodshed Is Coming to America” HERE)

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The ‘Imam of Peace’ Calls for a Police State. Is Tawhidi a Fraud?

A self-declared “Imam of Peace,” Imam Mohammad Tawhidi appears to have tricked many across the political spectrum into believing he is indeed seeking critical reform from within his religion.

The outspoken Imam has become a rising media darling, noted for his sensationalist claims, his willingness to condemn radical Islam, his calls for increased scrutiny of Salafi mosques, and his declaration that these acts are sanctioned by fundamentalist interpretations of the Koran.

He’s apparently received death threats, but has nonetheless persisted in speaking out about extremist strains within his religion.

Sounds good so far, right?

But as Tawhidi continues his meteoric rise, leaders within the Muslim Reform Movement have begun to notice that Tawhidi doesn’t seem to have any credentials, nor does he have much of a public record beyond last year.

Even more disturbing allegations have surfaced, alleging that he’s actually a Shiite Islamist who is making a concerted effort to persecute Sunni Muslims through extrajudicial means.

Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, a U.S. Navy veteran who has dedicated his life to reforming Islam, has declared Tawhidi a “radical of a different flavor.” In a piece for the Asia Times, Jasser notes that for all his tough talk on Sunni strains of Islam, Tawhidi does not say much about the radical Shiite movements inspired by Iran.

“His religious and educational programming originates in Bashar al-Assad’s Syria and radical Shia strains in Iraq and Iran,” Jasser writes.

Shireen Qudosi, another Muslim reformist, also shared her suspicions about the imam’s true intentions and ideology. Like Jasser, she suspects he could be a Shiite Islamist who is conning Westerners into promoting his ideology.

Chloe Patton, an expert on Australia’s Shiite community, warns Tawhidi subscribes to the radical ideology promulgated by the regime in Iran. “In Tawhidi’s black-and-white worldview, anything other than the Shia Twelver Islam that he follows is the terrorist ideology,” she writes.

And on Sunday, the mask finally came off — Tawhidi exposed his anti-Western ideals for the world to see.

The Iranian-Australian “Imam of Peace” openly advocated for a police state in his country of residency, writing the following tweets:

In one tweetstorm, the imam called for laws that would violate almost the entirety of the U.S. Bill of Rights.

It turns out, Mohammad Tawhidi is not the imam many have been waiting for. Instead, he appears to be a “one-trick contrarian” who may actually be an Islamist himself.

His response and calls to action may sound noble in highlighting the atrocities committed by fundamentalist Islamic radicals, as so few within the Muslim community are willing to speak openly and honestly about its problems and the need for reform.

Instead of seeking true reform, however, it appears Tawhidi is attempting to delegitimize opposition Islamist movements so that only his can thrive. (For more from the author of “The ‘Imam of Peace’ Calls for a Police State. Is Tawhidi a Fraud?” please click HERE)

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Same-Sex Marriage Is Not Today’s Replay of Interracial Marriage

June 12 was the 50th anniversary of Loving v. Virginia, the Supreme Court case that made interracial marriage legal across the United States. So someone was bound to publish an article, claiming that arguments made against same-sex marriage today are just like arguments made against interracial marriage fifty years ago. Therefore (so it goes) people who oppose same-sex marriage are on the wrong side of history, just like those who once opposed marriage between races.

I’ll be glad to agree with them. Sure, the arguments are the same. There’s no difference at all! Just like there’s no difference between a man and a mouse.

Take Dave Singleton’s article at Salon.com. For the most part it’s a story — a moving and very personal one, at that. He tells what it was like when he found out it was his godfather and uncle, Robert McIlwaine, who had argued the state’s position against interracial marriage before the Supreme Court in the Loving case.

It’s a great read, except for the errors he makes here:

The similarity in language used by lawyers arguing on both sides of interracial and gay marriage is undeniable. I’ve heard the same faulty logic used in Loving v. Virginia applied to gays and lesbians: Gay marriage is a sacrilege that will topple society, and heterosexual marriages will suffer. One state shouldn’t have to accept what another state legitimizes. And what about the kids Adam and Steve aren’t fit to raise? Unless reared by Adam and Eve, they will be messed up, scorned by society and miserable.

Yes, there’s “similarity” there. Humans and mice have a lot in common, too. Mice and men both have four limbs, two eyes, two ears, a nose, a mouth and hair. Therefore what’s true for men is true for mice, right? Sure — if you ignore all the differences. That’s what Singleton did here.

Those differences are plenty. I’ll focus on just four of them.

1. Common Beliefs Across All of Humanity

Unlike the situation with same-sex marriage, people in general have never taken it as given that there’s something wrong with marriage between races. As Francis Beckwith wrote in a very helpful 2010 Public Discourse article, common law never put forth any ban on marriage between races. That means that “interracial marriage was a common-law liberty,” of a sort that could only be turned back by laws specially written to have that effect. Some states wrote those laws to that end, but they were the exception, not the rule.

Same-sex marriage, in contrast, could never have been anything but an exception — if anyone even thought about it, that is, which never happened until just a few years ago.

2. Interracial Marriage was “Wrong,” Same-Sex Marriage Didn’t Exist

Some states made interracial marriages illegal — but just as an illegal left turn is still a left turn, those illegal marriages were still marriages. Those states might have considered them harmful marriages, the wrong sort of marriages, and ultimately illegal marriages, but they still considered them marriages. Beckwith reminds us (quite sensibly) that it would have made no sense to write laws against people of different races getting married, unless it was in some real sense possible for them to marry.

All this is completely different when it comes to same-sex marriage. It wasn’t the case (as it had been with interracial marriage) that same-sex couples were getting married, and lawmakers decided to call it off because they thought it was wrong or harmful. There was nothing there to call off. Same-sex marriage didn’t even exist. The Supreme Court in 2015 didn’t just declare it legal, as they had in the Loving case; the Court actually created a new thing that had never existed before, except in those few states that had already done the same thing before then.

In fact, as Beckwith points out, same-sex marriage has a lot in common with these former laws against marriage between races. Both of them rely on state coercion to define marriage in terms of something other than the natural, historic understanding of male and female uniting as a couple and to build a family.

3. Interracial Marriage was Banned, Same-Sex Marriage Wasn’t

Look at it this way: Same-sex marriage was never banned. It was never even “against the law.” While some states banned marriage between races, no state ever did that with same-sex marriage. Instead states took it to be non-existent simply by the way marriage was defined.

The Supreme Court’s same-sex marriage decision two years ago was very different from Loving, for it reversed no ban. Instead it created a new definition for marriage. Rather than letting marriage be defined as it always has been: the lifelong committed union between a man and a woman, whose natural expectation is (for the great majority) the building of a family, the court made it something else entirely, the law. It became, for the first time, the committed union of any two adults who get along together, and probably have a romantic attraction to each other.

4. How Marriage is Defined

And that matter of how marriage is defined has always been at the heart of the case against same-sex marriage. The single most influential work against same-sex marriage was a paper by three scholars for the Harvard Journal of Law and Policy, followed by a book on the same topic by the same authors, both of them centered on the definition of marriage. There is something that marriage is, they say; there is something that makes marriage marriage, and that something necessarily includes the male-female aspect. Their reasons for that go far beyond the social effects Singleton lists in his article (and beyond what I have room to discuss here).

That’s not to say no one has ever put forth other arguments besides these. Singleton names a few of them (with a dismissive sneer). But those arguments are like ears, nose and hair: they tell part of the story, but they don’t omit some of the knowledge that counts the most.

Summary: A Man or a Mouse?

Let me summarize before I close.

Some states made decisions contrary to the rest of the country and against most of history. They decided marriage between races was a bad idea, so it should be banned.

In contrast to that, no state has ever banned same-sex marriage. Until an eye blink of history ago, no state ever took action against it because it was a bad idea. Instead, marriage was always, by definition a relationship for opposite-sex couples. There are good reasons it was defined that way. That definition and its reasons have always been at the heart of the case against same-sex marriage.

I’m sure Dave Singleton can tell a man from a mouse. I’m sure he knows differences matter, even where similarities may also exist. In the matter of marriage, though, he ignores real differences that really exist. Either that, or else he hides them.

Interracial marriage and same-sex marriage are just too different to be called the same sort of thing. (For more from the author of “Same-Sex Marriage Is Not Today’s Replay of Interracial Marriage” please click HERE)

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Is Today’s Far Left “Possessed”?

During the primaries it was all the rage among some conservative pundits to cite the 2006 comedy Idiocracy as prescient of the election. The joke was on Trump supporters, who supposedly were as clueless as the characters in that movie. Some of those Tweets were funny, if mean.

But recent months have spoiled the humor. Between the relentless efforts by Deep State actors to sabotage a presidency, and the rising frenzy of hatred that has burst forth from the left, one thing is clear. We’ve stumbled from farce to the blackest kind of satire, the kind that bleeds over sometimes into the tragic. We’re not living out Idiocracy. Instead we’re re-enacting Dostoevsky’s The Possessed.

For those of you who didn’t work as night doormen in college, reading Russian lit in a polyester uniform, here’s what happens in that novel: A band of youthful “nihilists” emerge in a sleepy provincial town. They have no positive program for reform, or even revolution. Instead, they focus solely on tearing down what’s around them — everything from the family to the church, from private property to linear modes of rational thought. They’ve decided that the world as it really exists is so hopelessly tainted and evil, that only “pure” destruction can offer the clean slate needed to start again.

Those who oppose them are hapless, clueless, frightened or confused. Both conservatives and old-fashioned liberals resort to denial. They can’t face the truth of how their young people have turned out, can’t admit that when “idealists” call for annihilating paroxysms of violence, they really mean it. So the defenders of the old order do nothing. They make little concessions, which only feeds the beast. They lie to themselves, to get just one more good night’s sleep. Surely these young people will come to their senses before it’s too late… . Won’t they?

Dostoevsky Saw 2017 Coming

In Europe today, elites are taking just this approach to radical Islam. Surely there really can’t be millions of people living in Western countries who yearn for a seventh-century theocracy, along the lines of ISIS or Saudi Arabia. Who wish to repay the hospitality of secular Swedes, Germans, and Frenchmen by imposing sharia on them. Only some hateful Western extremist would say such a thing. Best to silence those “intolerant” alarmists, and go back to getting some rest in your tasteful, climate-controlled and peacefully childless house.

The attack on the U.S. Congress reminds us that Dostoevsky was right. People don’t rant on and on about “resistance” and revolution without any consequences. Without provoking real violence, which can escalate very quickly. Remember that Lebanon, Yugoslavia, and Venezuela were each once peaceful vacation spots. Citizens couldn’t imagine how bad things might really get. Until it hit them square in the face.

We must prepare ourselves, especially spiritually. Because multiculturalism really has morphed into a kind of cult. Andrew Sullivan laid out its elaborate system of dogmas and stigmas. It has no positive aim, no set of demands that we could ever possibly meet. No surrender will be sufficient.

For Souls, It’s a Buyer’s Market

In Britain, former Liberal Democratic leader Tim Farron learned that. An evangelical Christian in his private life, he tried to hold onto his position in politics by embracing legal abortion and same-sex marriage. It didn’t matter. The fact that in the quiet of his heart he might know better, might still hold to Christian principles, was absolutely intolerable. And so even after those sellouts, Farron was forced to resign. The lesson: Don’t bother trying to sell your soul. The market’s so flooded with them, it has run down the price to zero.

What spirit is it that demands at the same time that the British public accept millions of prescriptively intolerant orthodox Muslims, whose leaders demand sharia — but won’t let a pro-choice, pro-gay politician privately cling to Christian precepts? It’s the spirit of pure destruction, straight out of The Possessed.

The same spirit goads the comfortable, middle class white kids who put on hoods to help Antifa swing metal poles at visiting scholars. It drives some Jesuit priests to deny that Satan really exists — and then to go on to demonize those who dare to disagree. It compels the same people who think that “meat is murder” to defend Planned Parenthood, when it sells baby parts in buckets like KFC.

Pray for the Maniacs

We’re not just dealing with bad ideas, but evil spirits. Nor are you and I immune to their attractions. They will tempt us to cruelty, callousness, and fantasies of vengeance. They will drive us to treat our fellow men as if they were demons. But they aren’t. They are those demons’ victims — as surely as some drug-addled or psychotic hobo who screams at us in the park. (Where I live, this happens to me, late at night.)

When you meet such a scary homeless person, do you hate him? Should you? You might need to rouse some anger, in case you need to defend yourself. But on a deeper level, you know that he’s not in control. That his mind is no longer his own. Maybe you can’t help lure him back to sanity or sobriety. You might need to call the cops. But you feel that deep human kinship with him we should all feel as children of God.

Just so, we must look at the people now drunk with demonstrable madness, at intellectuals who hate reason, professors who silence discussion, and students who spit on learning. We must face them down firmly. We must use the ordered force of law to protect ourselves and our institutions. But we can’t let them tempt us into sharing their spiritual disorder. They must be rebuked and restrained. But they also deserve our pity. Something deep inside them even hungers for our prayers. (For more from the author of “Is Today’s Far Left “Possessed”?” please click HERE)

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In the Divided States of America, There’s Only One Way To “Unite”

Following the attempted political assassination of several GOP members of Congress this week, calls for “unity” echoed through the halls of power.

Democratic and Republican leaders alike offered up their ruminations on the matter — ”ruminating” not in the sense of offering profound thoughts on the latest tragedy, but rather, as cows “ruminate” on regurgitated cud. That an American citizen would take the ruling class’ dishonest and hyperbolic partisanship seriously enough to actually start shooting congressmen is tough for the political class to stomach, so for now, they chew on their hopes for national unity while promising to temper their rhetoric.

Such calls for “national unity” in the wake of violence are nothing new, and as I heard this latest chorus of “Kumbaya” reverberate around the country, I couldn’t help but snicker. I couldn’t hold back my laughter because I suspect too much about American government, too much about the meanness and bad faith of contemporary American politics, too much about the very nature of human beings’ relationship to political power to take American politicos’ calls for unity, love, and respect seriously. I have nothing against unity, love, kindness, and respect (and I certainly do not condone citizens randomly shooting members of Congress), but I cannot take the power-hungry seriously when they use the language of peace and community to advance their national ambitions of political control.

Political invective, per se, is not the problem — the drive for national solutions is. Even if the political class softens their rhetoric for a time (don’t hold your breath), they will sooner or later find themselves at one another’s throats again as long as they continue to nationalize every political issue under the sun. There is too much power at stake to behave otherwise. In fact, I expect we will soon see that rhetorical game whereby partisan “uniters” criticize anyone who disagrees with their political projects as “dividers.”

Contrary to popular political opinion, “national unity” is not synonymous with basic human decency and peace among men. Quite the opposite. But as long as “our” political leaders continue to conflate the two, a cruel irony will be at work here. The more America’s political leaders try to “unite” the nation through political power at the federal level, nationalizing every issue in the process, the more divided the nation will become. The United States is too diverse to be treated as one big happy family ready to march in lockstep.

The political class’ appeals to American ‘family’ and ‘unity’ is merely a means to obscure what’s really on the agenda— an agenda that goes far beyond the purview of our actual families, villages, townships, cities, and states. The political establishment continues to falsely believe a diverse nation of 300 million-plus people, a nation of nearly 20,000 actual cities, as well as countless families and cultures, can be managed like a singular political body without negative consequences. If only we surrender more of our liberties and governing decisions to Washington D.C., says the political class, “the people” of the United States can be prodded into unity — as long as we are allowed to chew on a bit of happy talk and watch a charity baseball game.

No doubt, how we speak to one another as fellow human beings is important. Indeed, culture and rhetoric are important. And, yes, though politics may often be downstream from culture, politics can also pollute the river of culture and discourse if allowed to become too pervasive. Immense political power has a way of rendering men suspicious and jealous of one another. And once politics comes to define a people through the power of a central state, all that is left is an impending battle over whose culture will be imposed through the power of that state.

In the face of such a looming war, it is no surprise that people often despair only to hurl invective, material threats, and people see actual bullets towards “the others” as the source of their angst. In such a world dominated by national political power, it is understandable that politicos, whether elected officials or disgruntled campaign volunteers, see anyone who opposes their national projects as a threat to humanity.

But the tyrant in you is the tyrant in me, and if we are not careful — if we keep offering the American people the immense national power to command and control their fellows — even our reactions against tyranny and violence will tend to mutate into movements to destroy one another for power’s sake.

If we truly wish to unite the American people, we must abandon our greedy nationalist daydreams. We must decentralize political power away from Washington D.C. and truly embrace the diversity of the American populace. We must reduce the potential power we have over one another so that tolerance for those we disagree with may flourish absent the threat of political coercion. Let California be California. Let Texas be Texas. Let Vermont go their own way and Alabama go another way, and so on. (For more from the author of “In the Divided States of America, There’s Only One Way To “Unite” please click HERE)

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