Thursday, January 19, 2017

Loony Democrat wants the fraudulent hacking meme institutionalized. James Clapper lied to Congress so why believe him?

Levine: Schools should teach children about Russian interference in election

National Intelligence Director James Clapper testifies on Capitol Hill on Jan. 10 before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on Russian Intelligence Activities. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)
National Intelligence Director James Clapper testifies on Capitol Hill on Jan. 10 before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on Russian Intelligence Activities. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen) 
Assemblyman Marc Levine. (Robert Tong/Marin Independent Journal)
Assemblyman Marc Levine. (Robert Tong/Marin Independent Journal) 
SACRAMENTO – History textbooks read by schoolchildren in California — and perhaps across the country — could include a lesson about Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election if a bill to be introduced by a Marin County legislator becomes law.
The bill from Assemblyman Marc Levine, D-San Rafael, will ask the state to adopt high school history curricula based on a recent national intelligence assessment: that Russia interfered in the election through the production of fake news and hacking, according to the lawmaker.
In testimony this month, National Intelligence Director James Clapper did not say the alleged Russian hacking changed the outcome of the race, but nevertheless called the actions “an existential threat” to the United States.
High school students need to learn about that threat, Levine said in an interview Wednesday. “We need to make sure that we treat this attack on American democracy with the appropriate significance it has in our nation’s history,” he said.
In 2014, California passed a law requiring the state board of education to consider adopting social studies lessons on the significance of electing the nation’s first black president, Barack Obama. Similarly, Levine said, the state’s Instructional Quality Commission would be asked to develop a lesson on Russian influence in the 2016 election and recommend it to the state board during its next revision of history and social studies standards.
“I’m not going to write the history book myself,” he said.
Another bill, introduced last week by Sen. Bill Dodd, D-Napa, would require schools to teach children “media literacy” — including how to tell the difference between “fake news” and real news.
“During the final, critical months of the 2016 presidential campaign,” Dodd’s bill states, “20 top-performing false election stories from hoax Web sites and hyperpartisan blogs generated 8,711,000 shares, reactions, and comments on social media.”
One Republican lawmaker, Sen. John Moorlach, of Costa Mesa, called the proposed Russian-interference lesson “petty,” an example of “showmanship.”
Asked whether kids needed to learn the difference between real and fake news, he said, “I’d just be happy if we taught kids how to read and write and do arithmetic.”

Government bureaucrats lie to avoid reality

US Government Caught Massively Fabricating Student Loan Default Data

Democrats/Liberals love anti American terrorists. Here's an example...

Why liberals just love to set terrorists free

What is it about progressives like President Obama — and even pretend progressives like Gov. Andrew Cuomo — that makes them so forgiving of terrorists?
Obama, on his way out the door, Tuesday commuted the effective life sentence of Puerto Rican nationalist-terrorist Oscar Lopez Rivera — an architect of the wave of terror that led to the murder-by-bombing of four at Fraunces Tavern in Lower Manhattan in 1975.
Cuomo, for no apparent reason other than to plant a wet one on Black Lives Matter, last month gave an early out to one-time Weather Underground conspirator Judith Clark — convicted of murdering two cops and a security guard during the infamous Brinks armored car robbery in Rockland County in 1981.
Obama actually spent Tuesday papering the wall with pardons and commutations. The best-known recipient was the emotional Dumpster fire formerly known as Bradley Manning — a onetime Army intelligence analyst who traitorously funneled hundreds of thousands of classified documents to WikiLeaks and then went on to become an icon of the transgender movement.
But while Tuesday may have been among the least auspicious days of the Obama incumbency, at least he was true to his established principles. He’s the fellow who could barely bring himself to say the word “terrorist” — so it’s no surprise that he chose to coddle one on his way out.
Rivera has been a hero for decades to hard-left anti-America types — including Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, both of whom were beyond delighted by Obama’s action.
“It’s been a long road emotionally and personally, and I have been very invested in this case,” said the speaker. “It’s overwhelming.” (So, too, for Rivera’s victims — but obviously they don’t count.)
“Thank you [President Obama],” tweeted de Blasio. “Congratulations to all who fought for this day.”
Rivera, not that it seems to matter, was involved directly or otherwise in at least 146 bombings, leaving nine dead in Puerto Rico and on the mainland. Among the wounded were NYPD bomb squad officers, one of whom was blinded.
Fraunces, where Gen. George Washington delivered his farewell to his military officers in 1783, is as iconic a target as America-haters could hope for. So it really is hard to fathom how the mayor of New York City could celebrate Rivera’s release.
Actually, no, it’s not. Just the opposite: FALN and Rivera were hard-core Communists operating at the height of the Cold War. Why would a mayor who honeymooned in Havana fail to recognize — pardon the expression — a fellow traveler, even decades down the road?
Cuomo’s motives in freeing Clark are less clear. Apart from a press release and the necessary legal paperwork, the governor has uttered scarcely a word concerning the commutation.
That is, what seized him to visit Bedford Hills Correctional Facility, interview Clark, deem her worthy of an early out and then grant it, is his secret.
Clark was affiliated with the bomb-throwing radicals of the Weather Underground (as was Obama intimate Bill Ayres; isn’t it amazing how circular these things can be?), and she drove the getaway car after the bloody robbery.
In other words, both Clark and Rivera were guilty as sin. They deserved the lengthy prison sentences they received — and in a just universe, they would serve every day. (Or, more likely, die behinds bars.)
But they won’t. Why not?
Again, Cuomo is keeping his own counsel and Obama slathered his actions with rhetorical boilerplate. So those seeking motives must speculate.
So let’s guess it was to send a message.
To wit, in Progressiveland, that some lives matter more than others; that dead and maimed cops and unlucky bystanders matter less than justly convicted and incarcerated radicals — and that in the final analysis, benevolent government is meant to stand with the bad guys. (And gals, as the case may be. Isn’t everybody a victim these days?)
This is just the sort of bird Obama might be expected to flip America as he departs. Cuomo, meanwhile, is a onetime centrist trapped in a sharply leftward-drifting state. Since he essentially stands for nothing anymore, if he ever did, it’s no surprise he chooses to drift with it.
Meanwhile, to put a tin hat on this bizarre episode, Lin-Manuel Miranda — the star around whom the Broadway mega-vehicle “Hamilton” orbits — announced he’ll stage a personal performance of the play for Rivera once the terrorist is sprung.
Whether Miranda will set tickets aside for the survivors of Rivera’s depredations, or Clark’s, isn’t clear. Probably not. Certainly that would mix the progressive message.
Bob McManus is a contributing editor to the Manhattan Institute’s City Journal.

Hidden CNN poll: Only Pope, Queen Elizabeth rank higher than Trump

Hidden CNN poll: Only Pope, Queen Elizabeth rank higher than Trump

The headline on the new CNN poll is: "CNN/ORC Poll: Confidence drops in Trump transition."
But inside the poll is another story: only Queen Elizabeth and Pope Francis have a higher approval rating than President-elect Trump according to Americans asked to consider 11 world leaders.
The main story doesn't mention the comparable numbers, and even undercuts Trump's approval ratings.
It opens: "Washington (CNN) Donald Trump will become president Friday with an approval rating of just 40 percent, according to a new CNN/ORC Poll, the lowest of any recent president and 44 points below that of President Barack Obama, the 44th president."
Actually, Trump's approval rating in the poll is 44 percent. Some 40 percent approve of his transition.
The details of the poll show that Trump has the same approval of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and soars over others including Germany's Angela Merkel and many others.
— Queen Elizabeth of Great Britain, 79% approval.
— Pope Francis, 66% approval.

Global warming and the media

Why NYT Hid The Numbers For The ‘Hottest Year On Record’

When you read a science report claiming that 2016 was the hottest year on record, you might expect that you will get numbers. And you would be wrong.
Robert Tracinski
They say that mathematics is the language of science, which is a way of saying that science is quantitative. It is moved forward by numbers and measurements, not just by qualitative observations. “It seems hot out” is not science. Giving a specific temperature, measured by a specific process at a specific time, compared to other systematically gathered measurements—that is science.
So when you read an article proclaiming that, for the third year in a row, last year was the hottest year on record, you might expect that right up front you will get numbers, measurements, and a statistical margin of error. You know, science stuff. Numbers. Quantities. Mathematics.
And you would be wrong.
I just got done combing through a New York Times report titled, “Earth Sets a Temperature Record for the Third Straight Year.” The number of relevant numbers in this article is: zero.
We are not told what the average global temperature was, how much higher this is than last year’s record or any previous records, or what the margin of error is supposed to be on those measurements. Instead, we get stuff like this.
Marking another milestone for a changing planet, scientists reported on Wednesday that the Earth reached its highest temperature on record in 2016—trouncing a record set only a year earlier, which beat one set in 2014. It is the first time in the modern era of global warming data that temperatures have blown past the previous record three years in a row.
Note to the New York Times: “trouncing” and “blown past” are phrases appropriate to sports reporting, not science reporting. Except that no sports reporter would dare write an article in which he never bothers to give you the score of the big game.
Yet that’s what passes for “science reporting” on the issue of global warming, where asking for numbers and margins of errors apparently makes you an enemy of science. Instead, it’s all qualitative and comparative descriptions. It’s science without numbers.
It wasn’t just the New York Times. Try finding the relevant numbers ready at hand in the NASA/NOAA press release. You get numbers comparing 2016’s temperature with “the mid-20th century mean” or “the late 19th century.” But there’s nothing comparing it to last year or the year before except qualitative descriptions. So the government’s science bureaucracy is setting the trend, making reporters dig for the relevant numbers rather than presenting them up front.
It’s almost like they’re hiding something. And that is indeed what we find. I finally tracked down an exception to this reporting trend: the UK newspaper The Independent gives us the relevant numbers.
They should have been in the first paragraph, but at least they’re in the third paragraph: “This puts 2016 only nominally ahead of 2015 by just 0.01C—within the 0.1C margin of error—but….” There’s stuff after the “but,” but it’s just somebody’s evaluation. Even this report can’t give us a straight fact and leave it alone.
For the benefit of science reporters and other people who are unfamiliar with the scientific method, let me point out that the margin of error for these measurements is plus or minus one tenth of a degree Celsius. The temperature difference that is supposedly being measured is one one-hundredth of a degree—one tenth the size of the margin of error. To go back to sports reporting, that’s like saying that the football is on the 10-yard line—give or take a hundred yards.
I think you can see why they didn’t lead with these numbers in the first paragraph or the headline, because if they did everyone would stop reading and move on to the next article. “This Year’s Temperatures Statistically Identical to Last Year’s” is not a headline that grabs anybody’s attention.
That’s not the worst part. The worst part is that this isn’t the first year they’ve done this. Two years ago, government agencies and gullible reporters repeated the exact same claims about the hottest year on record, along with some other howlers. What was the margin for that year’s record? Two one-hundredths of a degree, also much smaller than the margin of error.
Lest I be accused of not giving you numbers, global temperatures for 2015 were reported to be higher than 2014 by as much as 0.29 degrees Fahrenheit (0.17 Celsius), though you have to read to the 18th paragraph before the New York Timesdeigns to tell you this. That’s not as impressive as it may seem, because both 2015 and 2016 were El Nino years, when there is a normal, natural increase in temperatures.
This highlights a bigger problem with the global warming theory. For all the excitement over records set over the past 137 years—precise global thermometer measurements date only to 1880—current temperatures still are not clearly out of the range of normal variation in the 10,000 years or so since the planet bounced back from the last ice age, despite all of the furious attempts to hype them up.
Yet here is Arizona State University “theoretical physicist”—and, of course, media personality—Lawrence M. Krauss taking to Twitter to ask: “When will the evidence of the need to act be enough?” This is above a link to, you guessed it, the number-free New York Times report.
Yes, I really do wonder how anyone could possibly be skeptical of claims about the climate made by science “advocates” and by the media. It’s a total mystery.

For those who still believe fire can't collapse a building.

Seventeen storey building collapses in Iranian capital Tehran leaving at least 75 dead including 45 firefighters

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Need more proof liberalism is a mental disorder?

Obamacare diehards hold ‘cough-in’ protest at Trump restaurant — and conservative actor shreds them

Tourists Flee ‘Nightmare’ Paris Amidst Rising Theft, Assaults, Terror. Making Europe look like it did right after WW2

Tourists Flee ‘Nightmare’ Paris Amidst Rising Theft, Assaults, Terror

Tourists from China are avoiding France amid surging violence and crime, a Chinese tourism expert has said, reporting that customers are turning to Russia as a safer destination.

President of the Chinese Association of Travel Agencies in France, Jean-François Zhou, said “increasingly violent” thefts and assaults are turning France into “one of the worst destinations for foreign tourists”.
Mr. Zhou, a representative for major Chinese travel agency Utour in France, reported a steep decline in visitor numbers from Asia, and said many tourists are now looking to Russia as a less dangerous holiday destination.
“In 2016, there were 1.6 million Chinese tourists compared to 2.2 million in 2015. The  number of Japanese tourists dropped 39 per cent, and Koreans 27 per cent. Our tourists have turned to Russia, which is less attractive but at least it is a safe country. For Putin, it is an economic windfall”, he told Le Parisien.
Rising violence and aggression account for the drop, according to Mr. Zhou, who said: “For a number of Chinese tourists, the dream of visiting France and Paris has turned into a nightmare.
“[Chinese tourists] are robbed in the palace of Versailles, at the foot of the Eiffel Tower, in front of their hotel, as they leave the coaches … In high season, not a day goes by without tourists being assaulted.”
Violent incidents in France have “sparked panic” on social media in Chinese, Mr. Zhou said, recalling one in which an 80-year-old man was seriously injured as he tried to resist thieves, and he reported how female tourists have been pushed to the ground while criminals steal bags containing all their papers.
Having lived in France for 25 years, Mr. Zhou said he has borne witness to the country’s deteriorating security situation over the decades, which has resulted in Paris ranking “number one in Europe in terms of the upsurge in delinquency”.
While so far there are no organised campaigns calling on Chinese tourists to avoid visiting France, the experienced travel agent said that a boycott “has already begun”, with “several Asian operators preferring to divert Asian tourists to Italy, Spain, and Russia”.
Paris’s regional tourism office last year reported a slump in visitor numbers to the city, and attributed some of the decline to terror fears, as more than 200 people have been killed in Islamic terror in France since 2015.

Russia Snaps, Accuses UK, Germany And France Of "Grossly Interfering" In The US Election

Russia Snaps, Accuses UK, Germany And France Of "Grossly Interfering" In The US Election

Tyler Durden's picture
Unlike US accusations of Russian interference, at least Lavrov's claim can be substantiated with a simple google search of news event in mid to late 2016.
Speaking during a press conference following a meeting with his Austrian counterpart Sebastian Kurz, Lavrov said his angry outburst was because Moscow “is tired" of accusations it meddled in the US election. In fact, Lavrov said, it is time to “acknowledge the fact” that it was the other way around. 
“US allies have grossly interfered in America’s internal affairs, in the election campaign,” Lavrov said, quoted by RT
“We noticed that Angela Merkel, Francois Hollande, Theresa May, and other European leaders” did so. He added that official representatives of some of the European countries did not mince words, and essentially “demonized” Donald Trump during the election campaign. 
Among the more vivid examples, last August German Foreign Minister Frank Walther Steinmeier called Trump a “hate preacher.” Reacting to Trump’s statement that parts of London are ‘no-go areas,’ UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said in December that Trump is “unfit” to be US president. Later on, however, Johnson said that Trump’s presidency might be a “moment of opportunity.” 
On the other hand, the Russian government has expressed its willingness to work with the US under Donald Trump, Lavrov said. "Trump says that if the promotion of US national interests would lead to a chance of working with Russia, it would be foolish not to do that."
“Our approach is the same: where our interests coincide, we should be and are ready to work together with the US as well as the EU and NATO,” the minister stressed.
Over the past year, Russia has been repeatedly accused by Washington of meddling in the US election. In January, the US Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) issued a report allegedly proving Moscow had its fingers in the US election campaign. The public was only provided, however, with a declassified part of the paper, which contained no solid evidence. Trump’s advisor on foreign policy during the campaign, Carter Page said that the paper was “speculative” and served “certain political theories.” The US media, citing CIA sources and unverified reports, even alleged that Moscow tried to aid Trump directly to secure his victory.  Trump has rebuffed the allegations, saying it was simply another “excuse” by the Democrats to explain the defeat of Hillary Clinton. 
The demonization campaign culminated with last week's release of a dossier, according to which Russia had "compromising" materials on Trump, suggesting the president-elect is a puppet for the Kremlin. 
In response, yesterday Putin warned that he sees attempts in the United States to "delegitimize" Trump using "Maidan-style" methods previously used in Ukraine, and slammed the creators of the Trump report, saying "people who order fakes of the type now circulating against the U.S. president-elect, who concoct them and use them in a political battle, are worse than prostitutes because they don’t have any moral boundaries at all."

Eventually we are going to have to deal with this thuggery and threats of violence.

Singer Jennifer Holliday Backs Out of Inauguration After Intense Backlash

'I was receiving death threats from black peopleSinger Jennifer Holliday / AP

Singer Jennifer Holliday / AP
Singer Jennifer Holliday told ABC’s “The View” on Tuesday that she backed out of performing at President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration because she “was receiving death threats from black people.”
The broadway star stopped by “The View” and discussed her recent decision to cancel her performance set for Thursday on the eve of the inauguration.
Holliday was going to sing at the “Make America Great Again! Welcome Celebration,” but she canceled two days later. The performer said she got a call on Wednesday asking her to perform and claimed her social media went crazy with negative comments by Friday morning, when she backed out.
“I live a pretty reclusive life and then one morning you wake up and everyone hates you. I was like, what could I have possibly done to have these things thrown at me,” Holliday said.
“I’m an artist and I love America,” she said. “It just didn’t dawn on me. I performed for four other presidents. I didn’t think anything of it.”
Holliday informed the Trump team in an email that she would be unable to perform due to the harassment.
“I was receiving deatht threats at this point,” Holliday said. “I was receiving death threats from black people, the N-word from black people. They were saying they were going to kill me.”
Holliday was shocked by the comments, thinking white people were “messing” with her.
“Are these white people just messing with me? I’m going, ‘Oh my God, these are black people calling me this. They were saying I should kill myself,” Holliday said.

Education Committee Dems Awash in Union Cash.

Education Committee Dems Awash in Union Cash

Dems questioning DeVos received nearly $740,000 from teachers unions

A logo sign outside of the headquarters of the National Education Association (NEA) labor union in Washington, D.C. / AP 
The Senate Democrats expected to grill education secretary nominee Betsy DeVos have received nearly three quarters of a million dollars from teachers unions over the course of their careers.
The two largest teachers unions in the country have donated heavily to the eleven Democrats serving on the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee. The National Education Association has contributed more than $376,000 to the senators on the committee, while the American Federation of Teachers has given more than $361,000, according to a Washington Free Beacon analysis of federal election records.
The two unions represent about 4.5 million teachers and education employees across the country and are among the most influential labor groups in the country. Their willingness to shower politicians with campaign contributions and outside spending, as well as supply volunteers on the ground during election campaigns, has helped to boost their profile in Democratic circles.
The NEA spent more than $35 million to help Hillary Clinton and national Democrats in 2016, making it one of the top 10 biggest spenders in the country, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.), an avowed socialist and Clinton’s sole serious challenger in the 2016 primary, has been the biggest career recipient of NEA money on the committee, raising more than $100,000 from the union’s PACs, employees, and members over the course of his career. Those donations have made NEA one of his 20 largest career contributors.
The AFT, a member of the AFL-CIO, was also a big spender in 2016, finishing among the top 40 contributors in the country, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. It shelled out $15 million in 2016 with nearly all of those donations going to Democrats. One of the largest recipients of AFT cash has been Sen. Patty Murray (D., Wash.), the ranking Democrat on the committee. She has received more than $63,000 from the union.
DeVos has been a longtime champion of charter schools and vouchers aimed at helping students in low income areas or failing schools attend private schools. Her support for education reform has attracted criticism from Senate Democrats, including some who had previously supported charter schools. Freshman Sen. Maggie Hassan (D., N.H.) attempted to increase spending on charter schools by during her tenure as governor, but said she was “very concerned” about DeVos’ support for them after meeting with the nominee. Hassan raised about $21,000 from the NEA and AFT during her Senate campaign.
DeVos comes from a family of GOP activists whose political contributions have been criticized by liberal groups. Phillip Stutts, a former Department of Education appointee who has assisted the Trump transition team’s preparation for DeVos confirmation hearing, said that the large political donations from the NEA and AFT demonstrate that they are desperate to retain influence on education policy.
“They’re a dying dinosaur. They’re trying to hold on to power, which is why their speeches are rarely about children—they’re about protecting unions,” he said.
The hearing is scheduled for 5 p.m.

Report: 300,000 Small Business Jobs Lost Due to Obamacare

Report: 300,000 Small Business Jobs Lost Due to Obamacare

Over 10,000 small business establishments shut down due to health careAP 

Obamacare has cost roughly 300,000 small business jobs due to higher health care costs, according to a new report.
The American Action Forum, a center-right policy institute, released findings Wednesday that rising premiums and regulations under the Affordable Care Act have had “dire” consequences for the labor market.
The report found the law has cost $19 billion in lost wages per year and forced 10,000 small businesses establishments to close their doors. The study covered employers with 20 to 99 employees.
“Research from the American Action Forum (AAF) finds regulations from the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are driving up health care premiums and are costing small business employees at least $19 billion in lost wages annually,” the report said. “These figures varied by state, but in 2015 the ACA cost year-round workers $2,095, $2,134, and $2,260 in Ohio, New York, and North Dakota, respectively.”
“Premium increases, a prospect regulators predicted when issuing the first ACA regulations, also significantly diminished the number of business establishments and jobs nationwide,” the report said. “Across the country, small businesses (20-99 workers) lost 295,030 jobs, 10,130 business establishments, and $4.7 billion in total wage earnings. Florida lost 17,950 jobs; Ohio lost 19,000; Pennsylvania lost 15,680; and Texas lost 28,010 jobs due to higher sensitivity to rising health care premiums and the ACA.”
Ben Gitis and Sam Batkins, the authors of the report, used data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics for their findings.
The report used different data sets for small businesses with less than 50 employees, which were exempt from the law’s employer mandate. However, this group also suffered job losses and lower wages after Obamacare went into effect. The paper compared data from up to six years before the law was passed to show a clearer picture of Obamacare’s impact on small business.
Before Obamacare became law, workers still saw an increase in their average weekly pay when health insurance premiums went up.
“After the ACA became law, however, a one percent increase in total premiums was associated with a 0.012 percent decrease in average weekly pay,” the report said.
The numbers add up to roughly $3.9 billion in lost wages for small businesses with between 20 and 49 workers, which account for 20 million workers in the United States. The average worker for those businesses has lost $1,202 in annual pay.
Aside from wage losses and job cuts, Obamacare has cost the economy $51 billion and added 172 million hours of paperwork through regulations, the American Action Forum said.
“To put that in perspective, it would take more than 86,200 employees working full-time (2,000 hours annually) to complete a year of new ACA paperwork, roughly the population of Miami Beach, Fla.,” the report said.
The incoming Donald Trump administration has vowed to repeal and replace Obamacare, and congressional Republicans have already begun the process to repeal the health care law through the budget reconciliation process.
“There are many reasons policymakers have called for significant amendments to the ACA,” the American Action Forum said. “Higher premiums are typically cited as a top concern. However, these higher premiums have broader consequences for the labor market. As AAF’s research has shown, ACA regulations have contributed to at least $19 billion in lost wages, 10,000 fewer establishments, and nearly 300,000 lost jobs.