God bless fracking! I have benefited personally

Heating Oil PricesThe environmentalists and the left and the Democrats1 would have us believe that fracking is evil, evil, evil! but I, as a working man, sure have seen the benefits. The chart shows what I had to pay for heating oil last winter, in Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania, compared with what I paid for a delivery on Wednesday.

The great increase in domestic oil production, coupled with OPEC’s decisions to not cut production, has driven the price of oil down, and that’s a real benefit to working families in the northeast.

Now, to prepare for the oncoming winter, we bought this beauty on the 3rd of October:

Our brand new wood stove

Our brand new wood stove

We had noted previously that the Democrats, in their great zeal to help poorer Americans, had put forth regulations which would increase the costs of wood stoves, but, through smart shopping2 (getting a 10% discount for taking the floor model) and a military discount (another 10% off), we didn’t do too badly in buying the stove. The previous owner of our home had installed a chimney and hearth for the stove, but never added the wood stove herself, so I was able to install the stove myself, without any additional costs beyond the vent pipes.

The wood stove isn’t quite enough to heat our home by itself; a tall, narrow two story duplex with all of the insulation you’d expect in a house built in 1892, the blower on the stove just doesn’t get much heat up into the second-floor bedrooms. We had anticipated this: the wood stove is meant to supplement the steam radiators, not replace them, and should reduce our heating oil consumption, but certainly not eliminate it.3

A bit of irony: with the decline in the price of heating oil, it will take longer to recoup the cost of the wood stove! However, the security of having heat even if the power goes out for an extended period is worth something in itself.

  1. Please pardon the double redundancy.
  2. We purchased the stove at Lowe’s in Lehighton, Pennsylvania.
  3. Total cost was $697.86. I hope to break even on the stove this winter, and then have it as a net positive in the winters after that.

The New York Times subtle hit piece on Carly Fiorina

After having noted recently that Carly Fiorina had been getting very little “free” press, I found this story in The New York Times:

For Carly Fiorina, Peripatetic Childhood Helped Build Worldview

By Jason Horowitz | November 26, 2015

Carly Fiorina with her father, Joseph Tyree Sneed III, an esteemed conservative law professor, in 2006. Credit Justin Sullivan/Getty Images (Click to enlarge)

The 1969 Stanford Law School yearbook notified readers that Joseph Tyree Sneed III, a top professor with Harvard, Yale and Cornell on his résumé, would be taking leave from the California university to teach for a year in London and Ghana.

Joining him would be his wife, Madelon, who “paints and plays tennis,” and his three children, including his middle daughter, Cara, a burgeoning pianist who went by her middle name, Carleton. Today, Carleton is better known as Carly Fiorina, the presidential candidate who courts Republican voters with the story of her against-all-odds rise from the secretarial pool to chief executive of Hewlett-Packard, or, as she was introduced in Beaufort, S.C., one Friday last month, from the “reception desk to the boardroom.”

But Mrs. Fiorina’s father was not just any Republican. He was one of the country’s most esteemed conservative law professors, a Duke Law School dean whom President Richard M. Nixon appointed as a deputy attorney general and then a federal judge. His opinions on issues like California’s so-called three strikes law for repeat offenders influenced the Supreme Court, and his advocacy for a brilliant student named Kenneth Starr influenced American history.

And in those “fast-forward” years, she got to perform Shakespeare at a school in London with the future head of the English department at King’s College, Cambridge, and woke to the sounds of Muslims praying in Ghana as she followed her father on his teaching appointments.

Carly Fiorina’s high school yearbook picture from 1972, when she went by her middle name, Carleton. Credit via Durham County Library

There’s more at the link.

Neither the Fiorina campaign directly nor her SuperPAC site publicized this article through Twitter, something that they are both usually good at doing, and I can see why: it’s a subtle hit piece, trying to push the notion that, as a student, the then-Cara Carleton Sneed1 was privileged — which is true enough — and a snob, which is probably not the case.

The reader is meant to question Mrs Fiorina’s campaign biography, that she started out as a secretary, and worked her way up to being Chief Executive Officer of Hewlett-Packard, without the reporter ever saying that her story is false. Because she grew up in a fairly affluent family, well, we’re just supposed to assume she’d never really have started out as a secretary, but even The Washington Post confirmed that Mrs Fiorina “worked as a receptionist at a hair salon to pay for college room and board,” worked as a secretary through the temp agency Kelly Services, and was “a receptionist at Marcus & Millichap, a commercial property brokerage firm with nine or ten employees at the time.” She was given more and more responsibilities at Marcus & Millichap, and gained more and more experience. In just fifteen years she went from an entry-level employee to leading AT&T’s spin-off of Lucent Technologies and, later, Lucent’s North American operations. Hewlett-Packard later selected her to become CEO. While the latter parts of her biography are beyond question — and the Times is perfectly happy to not question that she was later fired by Hewlett-Packard, something Mrs Fiorina freely admits — the reporter wants you to think that the earlier parts might be not quite accurate.

It has been said that all publicity is good publicity, and thus, even though Mrs Fiorina’s campaign has not (yet) chosen to publicize this article, I have.2 It needs to be publicized, and the subtle bias in it pointed out.
Cross-posted on RedState.

  1. The Times story noted that she told Jay Pittard, an old high school friend, that she was going by Carly because she had grown tired of explaining to the draft board that Carleton, a traditional Sneed family name, was a girl’s name. As a man named Dana, I can completely sympathize with her problems!
  2. I support Mrs Fiorina’s candidacy, but I am not affiliated with the campaign in any way, nor have I been paid anything to write and publish this article.

For MSNBC, Thanksgiving isn’t a time to be thankful for what you have It's a time to lie to other people, and to lie to yourself

Thanks to William Teach of the Pirate’s Cove, I saw these wonderful hints from MSNBC on how to enjoy political conversation during Thanksgiving dinner. The byline on the article is simply “MSNBC staff,” so we are informed that this isn’t something designated as an opinion piece, but is simply a standard news (?) article. MSNBC has never hidden its leftist orientation, at least not in its broadcasts, but apparently the editors and staff believe that leftism is simply reality. From the article:

When your mom wants to know what’s going on with Caitlyn Jenner …

Caitlyn Bruce Jenner accepts the Arthur Ashe Courage Award and speaks onstage during The 2015 ESPYS at Microsoft Theater on July 15, 2015 in Los Angeles, Calif. Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage/Getty

  • What does “transgender” mean? Sometimes one’s gender identity, or one’s internal sense of being a man or woman, does not coincide with the sex that person was assigned at birth.
  • Just like you can’t change someone’s sexual orientation, you can’t change someone’s gender identity. So most people who identify as transgender, or trans, seek to more align their physical bodies with their gender identity.
  • But for various reasons, including choice and affordability, not all trans men and trans women choose surgery. Whether a person has undergone surgery or not, you should use the pronouns with which they identify.
  • The attempted suicide rate hovers around 40% for those who identify as trans, compared with only 1.6% for the general public. As a public figure, Caitlyn Jenner has served as a tremendous inspiration and comfort for many suffering from discrimination, social stigma, and anti-trans violence.
  • About 700,000 people in the U.S. identify as trans, according to 2011 findings from the Williams Institute.1

In other words, the good liberals at MSNBC want you to lie to your family, to transsexuals, and even to yourself. It does not matter if Bruce Jenner really believes he is a woman; he isn’t. He was born male, he grew up male, he competed athletically as a male, all of his life’s experiences were as a male, and even if he finds some quack to castrate him and build him a faux vagina and give him fake breasts, he will still be a male.2 He was never female, he didn’t grow up female, and he had none of the experiences that girls and women have as they go through life; no matter what he believes he is, he simply does not know what it means to be a woman, and his closest female role models are the Kardashians!

To treat transsexuals as being the sex they wish to be is to lie to them; to use “the pronouns with which they identify” is to lie to yourself.

Of course, transsexualism isn’t the only thing MSNBC lied about!

When your uncle wants to discuss the Black Lives Matter movement and whether it should be “all lives matter” …

  • Yes, all lives matter! But it’s helpful to remember the “Black Lives Matter” movement is not proclaiming that the only lives that matter are those of blacks, it is saying that black lives also matter.
  • The “Black Lives Matter” movement agrees that all lives matter, but it specifically seeks to highlight that young black males in the United States are being killed at alarmingly disproportionate rates and oftentimes their deaths are disregarded and not covered in the mainstream media.
  • The deaths of unarmed black men such as Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, Walter Scott, and Freddie Gray are among those that have brought this bubbling issue into the mainstream.
  • So, when people respond to the movement by saying “all lives matter,” they are misunderstanding the goals of Black Lives Matter, which is to drive attention to the disproportionate rates at which blacks are dying.
  • In some ways, saying “all lives matter” is like saying “all cancers matter” to a person suffering from lung cancer. Of course, all cancers matter but, at that moment, the person is specifically grappling with lung cancer — not all cancers. The generalization distracts from the issue at hand.

Naturally, “MSNBC Staff” concentrate on “Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, Walter Scott, and Freddie Gray,” but gives no context. Walter Scott was stopped for a minor traffic violation, and then got out of his vehicle and fled the scene on foot; a police officer pursued him and shot him. The shooting may have been unjustified, and the police officer has been charged with murder, but had Mr Scott simply accepted his ticket (for a broken brake light) he’d be alive today. Trayvon Martin attacked and assaulted a neighborhood watch patrolman, and was beating his head into the ground, when the watchman pulled out his weapon and shot Mr Martin. George Zimmerman was charged with second-degree murder for this, but was acquitted on all charges by a racially mixed jury. Michael Brown was a wanna-be thug who had just roughed up a clerk and robbed a convenience store, when, high on marijuana, he assaulted a police officer. A grand jury investigated it thoroughly, and found that the police officer had acted in self-defense. And Freddie Gray, though he may have been poorly treated while in custody — charges have been filed, but the cases have not yet been tried — was, to use the journalistic formulation, “known to the police.”

Tamir Rice was playing with a pellet gun which closely resembled a real firearm, and was reported to the police as brandishing a firearm in a Cleveland park; when he did not raise his hands when challenged by the police, but (allegedly) reached for the pellet gun in his waistband, the officers thought he was reaching for a real weapon, and shot him. It was a tragic error, but an understandable one in the circumstances.

What the MSNBC Staff do not mention when they stated that “young black males in the United States are being killed at alarmingly disproportionate rates” is that those young black males being killed at such high rates are being killed by other young black males. It would seem that #BlackLivesMatter only when they are ended by someone who isn’t black. Apparently noting that the killers of young black males are almost always other young black males is raaaaacist, so the left do not mention that at all. To mention that would be, horrors! seen as criticizing the black community, and we can’t have that! When MSNBC Staff wrote, “So, when people respond to the movement by saying “all lives matter,” they are misunderstanding the goals of Black Lives Matter, which is to drive attention to the disproportionate rates at which blacks are dying,” they were lying; if the goals were really about “driv(ing) attention to the disproportionate rates at which blacks are dying,” they’d be addressing the hugely disproportionate rate of violence within black communities, because that is where the vast majority of those young black men are being killed.

There’s really just so much more silliness — if not outright stupidity — coming from MSNBC that it’s hard to believe anyone watches it.
Cross-posted on RedState.

  1. Footnote by the Editor: This citation should not be taken at face value. If you follow the link, you will come to an article which notes the difficulties in measuring the “transgender” population, and if you read page 5 of the linked .pdf file, you will note that they are documenting estimates of between 0.1% and 2% of the population as having been somehow surveyed as “transgendered.” Those numbers are twice an order of magnitude (not two orders of magnitude) apart, and such a wide disparity is statistically invalid in drawing conclusions.
  2. A google search provides sources which say both that Mr Jenner has, and has not, undergone “reassignment” surgery. I neither know nor care whether he has yet been mutilated.

The Republican presidential candidate who has done the most to attack Obysmalcare

One of the reasons that I have been more in favor of candidates like Scott Walker, Rick Perry and Carly Fiorina is that I look for candidates who have actually done something, as opposed to those who say that they are going to get something done, if only they are given the opportunity. Senators and Representatives seem to get such opportunities much less frequently, but one Senator running for President actually did get something important done.

Rubio budget win is dealing heavy blow to ObamaCare

By Sarah Ferris – 11/24/15 06:12 PM EST

Sen. Marco Rubio may have dealt the biggest blow in the GOP’s five-year war against ObamaCare.

A 2014 budget measure inspired by the Florida senator and presidential hopeful is pushing some insurers to drop out of the ObamaCare exchanges, experts say.

“I think this is one of the most effective things they’ve done so far in terms of trying to undermine the Affordable Care Act,” Tim Jost, a healthcare law professor at Washington and Lee University, said of Republicans in Congress.

This fall, more than a dozen health insurers representing 800,000 people have dropped out of the ObamaCare exchanges, many out of fear that the administration no longer has the cash to cushion their losses in the costly early years of the marketplace.

The nation’s largest insurer, UnitedHealthCare, specifically mentioned the specter of a funding shortfall last week when it threatened to end its participation in the exchanges after 2016.

The angst in the industry centers on an obscure program in the healthcare law known as “risk corridors” that was designed to shield insurers against losses.

Rubio in 2013 went on the warpath against the program, decrying it as a “taxpayer bailout.” He penned op-eds against it, testified about it as the star witness at a House Oversight Committee hearing and even made his case to top House Republicans like then-Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio).

“There is a problem with the way [ObamaCare] exchanges are now designed that have not yet received the attention they deserve, but I promise you’re going to be hearing a lot about it in the days to come,” Rubio said in a Senate floor speech in early 2014.

While Rubio’s attempt to scrap risk corridors altogether was unsuccessful, his push contributed to a policy rider that was inserted into a 1,603-page spending bill passed at the end of 2014.

Under the provision, which is still in effect, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) could no longer tap other accounts — like its overall appropriations or its Medicare funding — to fund the risk corridors program.

There’s more at the link, but the legislation that Senator Rubio started is having the largest impact on causing the Affordable Care Act to collapse. We’ve said it many times before: the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was never meant to actually work; it was simply meant to pass, to establish the principle that the federal government is ultimately responsible for the individual’s health care. Then, when the ACA system did collapse, the left would simply say, “See? We tried to do things the ‘conservative’ way, using the existing private insurance system, and it didn’t work, so all that is left is single-payer.”

That would, of course, be devastating, as long as the Democrats controlled the Congress and the White House. But the Republicans control both Houses of Congress, and if they haven’t been able to repeal Obaminablecare, they will certainly never approve a single-payer system to replace it. And while it is possible that a Democrat could win the presidential election next year, and the Democrats could retake the Senate, the House is as locked into Republican control as solidly as it can be, at least through the 2020 elections, and very probably well beyond that; the Democrats’ primary voter support has concentrated too heavily in larger cities, and therefore in a fewer number of congressional districts. It is improbable that the redistricting following the 2020 census will change the Republican advantage very much.

Thus, while it is possible that the Republicans could never actually repeal the ACA, it is going to collapse eventually anyway, unless major changes are made to it, and the Republicans are in no mood to help it survive. Senator Rubio’s leadership on this has done the most to accelerate that collapse.

Did President Putin take action while President Obama dillied and dallied?

From The Jerusalem Post:

Report: Russian ground troops arrive in Syria in unprecedented military action

  • US officials say Russia positioning tanks at Syria airfield

  • Russia confirms that explosive downed plane over Sinai

In an unprecedented move, Russia has sent ground-troops into the Syrian battlefield in support of Bashar Assad as the dictator struggles to maintain his power in the continuous four-year-long civil war, according to a report by Kuwaiti daily al-Rai.

The report, which has not been substantiated by other sources, claims Russian military forces have been providing cover for T-90 tanks along with military air support which have attacked multiple strategic targets held by rebel forces in Idlib and Latakia.

In September, multiple US officials claimed that Russia had positioned about a half dozen tanks at a Syrian airfield at the center of a military buildup.

One US official said seven Russian T-90 tanks were observed at the airfield near Latakia, a stronghold of Syrian President Bashar Assad.

The Kuwaiti report adds that Russian forces have already taken over multiple strategic positions and have forced numerous rebel battalions to retreat. The report did not disclose whether there were Russian army casualties.

There’s more at the link.

Is this report accurate? If it is, it would appear that Russian President Vladimir Putin disagrees with President Obama’s “definition of leadership, (which) would be leading on climate change.

Some good news for Carly Fiorina But it is dramatically outweighed by the bad

From USAToday:

Survey finds conservative Millennials favor Carly Fiorina


Despite her falling poll numbers, businesswomen Carly Fiorina has one group of GOP voters in her corner.

G2 Analytics, an analytics platform that allows users to give real-time feedback during live or recorded events, and the College Republican National Committee conducted a web-based focus group to measure 328 Millennial Republican primary voters’ reactions during the Nov. 10 debate hosted by Fox Business Network.

Using a buzzer, participants indicate whether a candidate’s answer made them “more likely” or “less likely” to vote for that particular candidate. What’s more, participants answered “flash poll” questions during commercial breaks.

The results indicated conservative Millennials are 80.8% “more likely” to support after Fiorina after the fourth debate — the highest of any Republican candidate.

There’s more at the link, but the real problem is that Mrs Fiorina, the candidate favored by the Editor of The First Street Journal, is simply not generating news. The Atlantic noted, on October 20th:

Fiorina has practically disappeared from the headlines in the last few weeks. She doesn’t seem to be as good at collecting “earned media”—attention in the press, more or less. Donald Trump and Ben Carson, in contrast, are great at creating controversies that get them on TV. John Sides at The Monkey Cage has been on a crusade to convince readers that Trump’s high polling, and any dips, are caused almost entirely by the level of media attention he receives. Carson’s statements about the Holocaust and gun control, or about the Umpqua massacre, may be derided by some, but they keep his name in the news—and they rile up supporters who see criticism of his remarks as persecution. (Fiorina pulled something similar off when she insisted she’d seen a video taken at a Planned Parenthood that did not exist, but that moment passed, and she hasn’t created another.)

Just how bad that is is reflected in the results of my Google search: the article, dated over a month ago, appeared on the very first page of a Google search for Carly Fiorina made at 8:29 AM this morning. A site search of The New York Times did not return a single article about Mrs Fiorina dated in November, save a single one which was an article about Hillary Clinton not defending Mrs Fiorina when a man at one of Mrs Clinton’s events said that he’d like to strangle the Republican candidate.

I have to ask: what the Hell is Mrs Fiorina’s campaign staff doing? Her staff is responsible for generating attention for the candidate, and they are not getting it done. Oh, I still get plenty of e-mails — mostly asking for campaign contributions — and see plenty of Facebook and Twitter notices from the staff, but that is stuff that could all be done by one 19 year old college sophomore working on his first campaign.1 But, in the end, if Mrs Fiorina’s staff is not doing good work, the candidate herself is responsible for it.

And Mrs Fiorina has failed, directly, in a couple of ways:

  1. The leading candidates have all thrown out plenty of red meat on which the media promptly jumped. Some of the press was good, and some unfavorable — and I’d argue that most of Donald Trump’s and Ben Carson’s media coverage has been unfavorable — but it is an old, old saying that all publicity is good publicity, and Mrs Fiorina, pretty much the polar opposite of a red meat candidate, has not been generating any. She is, in my opinion, the best potential president out there, but she isn’t showing herself to be the best presidential candidate, at least at the moment.
  2. As I have noted previously, Mrs Fiorina got her initial surge due to her performances in the first two debates,2 but that she needed to continue to win the debates to sustain her candidacy, and that she has not done. Her performances in the third and fourth debates were solid, but they were still not the winning ones.

This diary on RedState suggests that some of the lower tier candidates are about to run out of money, and it does not list Mrs Fiorina among the five running out of money.3 Mrs Fiorina has been a bit more cautious with her campaign spending, which would allow her to continue longer, but eventually she is going to have to generate more interest, and spend more money, or she will fall by the wayside. Perhaps her campaign and she hope to pick up most of the support of the candidates who drop out before her — most of the candidates who are running out of money are, like her, not the red meat candidates — but I have to wonder if that could ever be enough.
Published in a slightly different form on RedState.

  1. Most of it seems to originate with Mrs Fiorina’s SuperPAC, Carly for America, which has been doing most of the campaign work, while less comes from the official campaign site, Carly for President.
  2. In the initial debate on Fox, she was relegated to the undercard debate.
  3. Rand Paul, Chris Christie, Mike Huckabee, Ben Carson, and Jeb Bush

Economics 101: Maybe people have gotten smarter? Didn't you know? We're supposed to behave the way Our Betters believe we should behave

From The Wall Street Journal:

Why the Housing Rebound Hasn’t Lifted the U.S. Economy Much

Many homeowners don’t realize they have home equity to tap, while banks have pulled back on loan amounts and other types of loans have become cheaper

By Joe Light | November 22, 2015 2:50 p.m. ET

American homeowners are finally digging out of the hole created by the housing crisis. But their housing wealth is playing a much smaller role in the overall economy than it did before the downturn.

Home equity has roughly doubled to $12.1 trillion since house prices hit bottom in 2011, according to the Federal Reserve. As a result, a key gauge of housing wealth—homeowners’ equity as a share of real-estate values—is nearing the point seen a decade ago, before the downturn.

Such a level once would have offered a double-barreled boost to the economy by providing owners with more money to tap and making them feel more flush and likely to spend. But today, that newfound wealth has had little effect on behavior. While the traditional ways Americans tap their home equity—home-equity loans, lines of credit and cash-out refinances—are higher than last year, they are still depressed.

In the first half of the year, owners borrowed $43.5 billion against their homes with home-equity loans and lines of credit, according to trade publication Inside Mortgage Finance. That was 45% higher than in the first half of 2014, but scarcely a quarter of the amount seen when equity was last as high in 2007.

Meanwhile, cash-out refinances, which let homeowners take out a new mortgage and tap some of the home’s value at the same time, were up 48% in the three months ended in August from the year-earlier period, according to Black Knight Financial Services. But they remain below the level seen in the summer of 2013. The average cash-out refinance in the three months ended in August left the borrower with mortgage debt of about 68% of the home’s value—not a risky level by any stretch.

Home equity’s effect on consumer spending is at its lowest ebb since the early 1990s, according to Moody’s Analytics. The research firm estimates that every $1 rise in home equity in the fourth quarter of 2014 would translate to about two cents of extra consumer spending over the next 1 to 1½ years. That was a third of the impact home equity had before the bust, Moody’s said.

There’s more at the link, but this was one of the worst articles I have ever read in the Journal. There wasn’t a single word, not even the slightest hint, other than saying that homeowners might be more “conservative” today, that homeowners might have learned from the last recession that going overboard on home equity loans was a prescription for disaster.

The comments by Journal readers on this article were not exactly kind, but Mr Light’s article exemplified the thinking of the Obama Administration during the early part of the recession and the mark-up of the 2009 stimulus bill: the assumption was, and remains, that consumers would, and should, behave the same way after the recession as they did prior to the housing crash. Instead, as we have noted previously, Americans who could increased their rates of savings, and even though banks had plenty of money to lend, the very low interest rates pushed by the Federal Reserve still did not lead to as much borrowing as the government wanted to see.

Why, it is almost as though Americans had learned their lessons — albeit, the hard way for too many of them — that they ought to behave more responsibly with their economic decisions.

And this is why the government has proved to be such a poor leader of the economy: while Our Betters have decided the way that people should behave in their economic decisions, we commoners don’t always do what they say we should do.
Cross-posted on RedState.

The federal government loves illegal immigrants . . . and the taxes they pay Too bad Uncle Sam doesn't take into consideration the government benefits they cost

From the Raleigh News & Observer; hat tip to Sister Toldjah!

NC worker arrested after complaining about wages

Miriam Martinez Solais worked for low wages in a Roxboro restaurant until 2014

After Solais reported lost wages to labor officials, former boss had her investigated

Federal labor officials want restaurant owner cited for retaliating against employee who complained

By Mandy Locke | mlocke@newsobserver.com

ROXBORO – When desperation drove Miriam Martinez Solais to sneak across the Rio Grande in 2007, she imagined life in the United States would be worth the risk.

Here, Solais thought she would find decent pay for honest work. She imagined earning enough money to feed and clothe Ruth, the 3-year-old daughter she left behind with family in Mexico.

Instead, Solais, 28, could spend the next five years or more in prison. Roxboro police say she is a thief who used a stranger’s Social Security number when seeking work as a cook at a local Italian restaurant.

Federal labor officials describe a different kind of misconduct. They say Solais is the victim.

In a complaint filed in federal court, labor investigators are accusing Solais’ former boss, Giovanni Scotti D’Abbusco, of retaliating against her for complaining that Vesuvio’s restaurant cheated her out of thousands of dollars of wages she earned.

Solais’ predicament brings to the forefront political and policy questions that draw emotional responses. Like millions of other natives of Mexico, Solais came to America uninvited and is here illegally. She soon found a place for herself in a service industry that leans on immigrants willing to work hard for low pay.

Read more here.

The rest of the article contains more details, and my impression is that her former employer knew all along that she was an illegal immigrant; he hired a private detective to investigate Miss Solais, and the investigator discovered that she had used a real American’s Social Security number. Thus, she committed more crimes than just crossing the border illegally: she collected wages fraudulently, and falsified a federal document.

Miss Solais should be prosecuted, for crossing the border illegally, for paying a runner to get her into this country, and for the crimes committed by using someone else’s Social Security number. President Obama won’t allow that to happen, of course; hopefully President Fiorina’s administration1 takes care of that in 2017. If Miss Solais is convicted of such, she should be sent to jail, to send the message to everyone else fraudulently using a Social Security number.

And the feds should continue to investigate her former employer. He is alleged to have employed an illegal immigrant, and if he did so knowingly, that would be a crime. If he defrauded Miss Solais of the full wages to which a legal employee would be entitled, as has been alleged, that, too, is a crime, a federal offense. If sufficient evidence against her former employer can be found, he should be prosecuted, and if convicted, sent to jail; that would send the message that the next Administration is serious about enforcing immigration laws, and that employers will not get away with just a fine if caught.

But, let’s tell the truth here: the federal government loves having illegal immigrants using fraudulent Social Security numbers. It wouldn’t take much effort at all to determine that identical Social Security numbers are being used to report wages and pay income, Social Security and Medicare taxes for more than one individual; a simple computer program could determine when wages were reported and taxes collected from the same Social Security number in Roxboro, NC and Elko, NV, during the same pay periods. But by not pursuing this, the Social Security Administration takes in more in those taxes, and the government loves collecting taxes. It doesn’t harm the real American whose Social Security number is being illegally used, unless that American is a retiree who then loses part of his Social Security benefits because the government says he is working beyond the threshold amount.2 And it might actually benefit the real American, if the government counts the wages and taxes reported by both the legal and illegal worker as part of the real worker’s earnings in determining Social Security benefits, but I’ll bet that that doesn’t happen very often.

However, those additional taxes don’t outweigh an important fact: the Center for Immigration Studies estimates that 30% of native-born American families use some form of welfare program, and that jumps to 51% of all immigrant families, with a whopping 71% of illegal immigrant families using some form of welfare.3 We have an annual half-trillion dollar budget deficit, and entitlements are the primary driver of virtually uncontrolled government spending; allowing illegal immigrants to collect welfare benefits is just plain madness.

Of course, the Obama Administration loves having illegal immigration, and loves having more and more people on welfare, figuring that such is a guaranteed Democratic vote generator. That it will drive us into bankruptcy, well that isn’t all that important.
Cross-posted on RedState.

  1. From my keyboard to God’s monitor screen!
  2. If you are younger than full retirement age and make more than the yearly earnings limit, your earnings may reduce your benefit amount. (If you were born between 1/2/1943 and 1/1/1955, your full retirement age is 66 years.)
    • If you are under full retirement age for the entire year, we deduct $1 from your benefit payments for every $2 you earn above the annual limit. For 2015, that limit is $15,720.
    • In the year you reach full retirement age, we deduct $1 in benefits for every $3 you earn above a different limit. In 2015, the limit on your earnings is $41,880 but we only count earnings before the month you reach your full retirement age.

  3. The Center for Immigration Studies is a non-partisan, non-profit group, but it advocates policies to reduce immigration into the United States.

Rule 5 Blogging: Vive la France, encore une fois !

It’s the weekend and time, once again, for THE FIRST STREET JOURNAL’S version of Rule 5 Blogging. Robert Stacey Stacy McCain described Rule 5 as posting photos of pretty women somewhat déshabillé, but, on this site, our Rule 5 Blogging doesn’t put up pictures of Laetitia Casta in her summer clothes, but women, in full military gear, serving their countries in the armed forces. The terribly sexist authors on this site celebrate strong women, women who can take care of themselves and take care of others, women who have been willing to put their lives on the line in some not-so-friendly places, women who truly do have the “We can do it!” attitude.

Une fois de plus, puisque ce sont les Français qui prennent la lutte pour Da’ish , nous honorons les femmes militaires Français!


Continue reading ‘Rule 5 Blogging: Vive la France, encore une fois !’ »

From Around the Blogroll

As we noted yesterday, all of the promises and projections that the Democrats made concerning the 2010 health care reform act debates have proved to have failed, and miserably so. Now we lean that the United States spends 8,713 per person on medical care, or 16.4%of GDP, while our neighbor to the north spends $4,315, or 10.2% of GDP.

But, what the MSNMoney article doesn’t tell you is that we (mostly) get what we pay for. Americans demand high quality, prompt medical care, which Canadians don’t get, and we get it . . . as long as we are using the private pay health care system, and not the single-payer Veterans’ Administration system.

And now, the Blogroll!