Sunday, November 23rd 2014
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HALF-FULL REPORT 11/21/14 Print E-mail
Written by Dr. Jack Wheeler   
Friday, 21 November 2014

I just got back from what you know by now was The Mystery Adventure I couldn't name last September - for I am on the Mullah Regime's blacklist. 

I was able to secretly scribe Hope for Iran then post it in Istanbul yesterday, and now have to play catch up with what's been going on in the world.  Yet again, I can't thank Jack Kelly enough for penning two marvelous HFRs in my absence.

Let's start by taking a break to read the best description I've seen of Zero's almost impossibly mendacious demagoguery last night (11/20):  Ben Shapiro's Kneel Before Zod.  His opening line:

"It was historic, both in its scope and its dishonesty: the speech represented a closely-woven and incredible tapestry of falsehood, exposited with a straight face by the greatest liar in modern American history... (It was) like watching a madman describe, with preternaturally perfect sincerity, how the moon was constructed of cheese."

The bottom line for me was how much this drama is a truly Reaganesque moment.  It's a lesson of history for the GOP -- and wait 'till you see the pictures of how it might happen.
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HOPE FOR IRAN Print E-mail
Written by Dr. Jack Wheeler   
Thursday, 20 November 2014

Shiraz, Iran.  "Where are you from?" the Iranian man asked me.

With a big smile, I happily answered, "America."  He responded with a smile of his own.  "Ah, America... America Number One!"

He hooked his two index fingers together.  "American people, Iranian people, good... friends."  He unhooked his fingers and waved his hand in a gesture of contempt.  "Governments, no good."  We both belly-laughed.

I and my friends with me repeatedly had the same experience, whether in Tehran, Sari, Mashad, Yazd, Isfahan, Shiraz or Tabriz.  We lost count of the people - men and women - who approached us to ask where we were from, and upon being told we were Americans, without exception they would react with surprise, then a beaming smile and say "Welcome."

We never once received a negative reaction or a frown.  Collectively we've had encounters with hundreds of people over the past twelve days with people all over Iran who spoke some English, some well, some just a few words, and the one thing they wanted us to know was the abyss of difference between them - the people of Iran - and their government.

The mullahs who ran their government and preached hate for America did not speak for them.  One lady covered in a black hejab tightly grasped the hand of one of the women among us to plead, "Please tell your friends in America that we Iranians are not their enemy."

As one shopkeeper in Isfahan's bazaar told us, "What I want is for more Americans to come to Iran, and for all the mullahs to leave." Here's how to do it -- and yes, there are my pictures.
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OBAMA IS NOT A MONARCH Print E-mail
Written by Senator Ted Cruz   
Thursday, 20 November 2014

The Constitution designs a system of checks and balances for our nation, and executive amnesty for immigrants here illegally unilaterally decreed from the White House would seriously undermine the rule of law.

Our founders repeatedly warned about the dangers of unlimited power within the executive branch; Congress should heed those words as the president threatens to grant amnesty to millions of people who have come to our country illegally.

To be clear, the dispute over executive amnesty is not between President Obama and Republicans in Congress; it is a dispute between President Obama and the American people. The Democrats suffered historic losses in the midterm elections largely over the prospect of the president's executive amnesty. 

President Obama was correct: His policies were on the ballot across the nation in 2014. The elections were a referendum on amnesty, and the voters soundly rejected it. There was no ambiguity.

Undeterred, President Obama appears to be going forward. It is lawless. It is unconstitutional. He is defiant and angry at the American people. If he acts by executive diktat, President Obama will not be acting as a president, he will be acting as a monarch.

Congress, representing the voice of the people, should use every tool available to prevent the president from subverting the rule of law.  Here are two of them.
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THE IRANIAN DEAL FANTASY Print E-mail
Written by Michael Ledeen   
Wednesday, 19 November 2014

What sort of deal is being concocted between Obama and the Iranian regime?  Pundits, experts, reporters, and pols are weighing in on epiphenomena ranging from the number of Iranian centrifuges that will be allowed to how quickly or slowly the remaining sanctions will be lifted.

Here in Washington the "inside story" that has been circulating for more than a week is: the deal is all done and it will be announced before the 24th, the nominal deadline for the negotiations on a "permanent" agreement.

I've been here since 1977, approaching forty years, and "inside stories" have been wrong...almost always.  Say 80-90 percent of the time.  That's because the "information" is circulated to advance or sabotage policies or individuals, not to inform.  So I don't pay much attention to such stories.

Especially when it comes to Iran, there's always a considerable amount that we don't know and aren't going to know, so it's best to be tentative.

But we do know some things, and there is an historical record that is pretty consistent, so let's go with that stuff.
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LOOKS LIKE THE DEMOCRATS ARE THE STUPID PARTY NOW Print E-mail
Written by Jack Kelly   
Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Only 36 percent of Americans expressed approval of Democrats in a Gallup poll Nov. 12, the lowest in the 22 years Gallup has been asking that question. Republicans were approved of by 42 percent. In Gallup's poll 13 months ago, 43 percent had approved of Democrats, just 28 percent of the GOP.

To understand how Democrats could fall so far so fast, consider MIT economist Jonathan Gruber, to whom the Obama administration paid $400,000 to help design Obamacare.

Prof. Gruber thinks he's very smart, and you aren't.

"(Obamacare) was written in a tortured way to make sure CBO did not score the mandate as taxes. If CBO scored the mandate as taxes, the bill dies," he said during a health care conference at the University of Pennsylvania in October of last year.

"Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage," Mr. Gruber said.
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THE STUPIDITY OF ANTI-FREEDOM EXPERTS Print E-mail
Written by Richard Rahn   
Tuesday, 18 November 2014

The only surprising thing about Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber's revelations that the legislation was based on a series of lies and voter stupidity was that Mr. Gruber was so stupid to think no one would see the videos of him saying so.

The good news is that, perhaps, many more Americans will wake up to the fact that Obamacare is not the only hoax they have been subjected to, and will be much more skeptical about policy experts' snake oil. Most of these schemes increase the power and money flowing to the political class and their "experts," while robbing the pocketbooks and liberties of the people.

The great economist F.A. Hayek (1899-1992) argued there was a limit to what any one person or even groups of people could know, which was one reason socialist planning always failed. His 1974 Nobel Prize lecture ended with the following sentence:
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THE BEST WAY TO CHANGE OUR LIVES Print E-mail
Written by Dr. Joel Wade   
Wednesday, 19 November 2014

There are lots of tricks and techniques for making changes in our lives: having goal-setting strategies, setting priorities, and structuring support for new and better habits, to name just a few. But one of the most important elements has less to do with what we do, and much more to do with how we do it.

Think of the people who have had the greatest positive influence on you. Did they spend a lot of time nagging, berating, insulting, or shaming you? I suspect not.

Shame has its place. But once that feedback is received, and we have taken the steps to correct what we feel ashamed of, that emotion has done its job.

For example, researchers have found that among alcoholics who have become sober, those who continue to actively feel ashamed of themselves, to criticize and castigate themselves for their previous behavior, are the ones who go back to drinking.

 On the other hand, it turns out that the most effective way to change things for the better is...
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U.S. MARINES RESCUE ISIS SEX SLAVES Print E-mail
Written by To The Point News   
Friday, 21 November 2014

Recently, a detachment of US Marines were secretly sent on a daring mission to rescue a large group of females captured by the ISIS Moslem terrorists in Iraq who were using them as sex slaves.

TTP has been able to obtain an exclusive photo of the operation as the Marines were conducting the sex slaves to safety.  Here it is:
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HALF-FULL REPORT 11/14/14 Print E-mail
Written by Jack Kelly   
Friday, 14 November 2014

This has been a terrible week for Democrats, because of the loose lips of an Obamacare architect who couldn't resist bragging to his fellow liberal elitists about he and the rest of the White House gang bamboozled Congress and the "stupid" American people.

Even former White House Press Secretary Jay Carney thinks Jonathan Gruber is an ass. He's become such a liability Democrats are pretending they never heard of him. But they can't escape from their tar baby.
* * * *
Zero has made it clear he intends to do precisely the opposite of what Americans want him to do, which signals many more terrible weeks ahead for Democrats. Especially for Hillary Clinton.
* * * *
After secret negotiations, President Obama made a deal with China on "climate change." It's "historic," a "game changer," say most in the MSM. But Foreign Policy magazine wonders: "Why is Beijing downplaying the supposedly huge climate change deal?
* * * *
Zero also has been conducting secret negotiations with Iran. It speaks volumes about the parlous state our country is in that the president is more eager to deal with the mullahs than with Republicans.
* * * *
The runoff in the Louisiana senate race is becoming a laugher, an internal poll indicates. "Landrieu should save everyone a lot of money and just concede now," tweeted uber leftist Markos Moulitsas.
* * * *
President Obama plans to issue an executive order granting amnesty to about five million illegal immigrants by the end of next week, reported Fox News. The New York Times confirmed.

This is actually good news, because it will unify Republicans in opposition to the president. House Speaker John Boehner, R-OH, promised Thursday to fight it "tooth an nail." 

And Americans will be royally peeved.
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CHIEF JUSTICE ROBERTS MAY REDEEM HIMSELF Print E-mail
Written by Jack Kelly   
Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Democrats who thought last week couldn't have been worse learned Friday they were mistaken.

The Supreme Court agreed to decide whether it is legal for the IRS to subsidize Obamacare policies purchased on Healthcare.gov, the federal exchange.

The Obamacare statute restricts payment of subsidies to taxpayers who purchase insurance "through an Exchange established by the State," a three judge panel in the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled July 22 in Halbig v. Burwell (Sylvia Burwell is secretary of Health and Human Services).

That was a drafting error, Democrats said.
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REPUBLICANS MUST FIGHT THE EPIDEMIC OF VOTER FRAUD Print E-mail
Written by Jack Kelly   
Thursday, 13 November 2014

According to data collected by Harvard University's Cooperative Congressional Election Study, more than 700,000 non-citizens may be voting in our elections.

It's a mathematical certainty that votes illegally cast elected Sen. Al Franken in Minnesota in 2008, re-elected Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va, this year. 

Guerrilla journalist James O’Keefe videotaped Democrats and allied groups in Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, Texas and Virginia offering to help register those they knew were ineligible. 

Voting machines in Illinois, Maryland and Virginia recorded votes cast for GOP candidates as votes for their opponents. These were “calibration errors,” officials said. Oddly, “calibration errors” never changed a Democrat vote to Republican, occurred only where election officials were Democrats.

The tsunami of fraud exposes as false and vile the Democrat charge ballot security measures are “voter suppression.”
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CHINA'S MARIJUANA SURPRISE Print E-mail
Written by Hayato Watanabe   
Wednesday, 12 November 2014

An economic stir is happening in China, but it's in an industry you might not expect. With more than half of the 600 relevant patents filed with the World Intellectual Property Office now owned by Chinese companies, the country is well positioned to dominate the global cannabis market. Which is very surprising for a nation where drug trafficking is still punishable by death and mere possession of the substance can result in a lengthy spell behind bars.

Chinese investment in the cannabis market could not be more perfectly timed, as countries like the U.S. and Uruguay begin to experiment with decriminalization. Medical marijuana research has surged over the last decade as medicine and finance have coalesced to legitimize the business of cannabis.

The fervor for the war on drugs that has for decades driven the policies and public opinion on marijuana decriminalization is slowly fading. In the U.S., where cannabis is now legal in four states, the rhetoric is moving away from issues like crime and security, to more progressive discussions on race, mass incarceration, and personal freedom.

Meanwhile, there is another emerging dimension: Western medicine is beginning to take more seriously the tradition and techniques of alternative medicine popularized by China. Part of this tradition is cannabis, which has been used to treat illnesses ranging from depression to constipation.
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ASIA'S PROBLEMS CAUSED BY CHINA ARE EPIC Print E-mail
Written by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard   
Thursday, 13 November 2014

Deflation is becoming lodged in all the economic strongholds of East Asia. It is happening faster and going deeper than almost anybody expected just months ago, and is likely to find its way to Europe through currency warfare in short order.

Factory gate prices are falling in China, Korea, Thailand, the Philippines, Taiwan and Singapore. Some 82% of the items in the producer price basket are deflating in China. The figure is 90% in Thailand, and 97% in Singapore. These include machinery, telecommunications, and electrical equipment, as well as commodities.

China itself is now one shock away from a deflation trap. Chinese PPI has been negative for 32 months as the economy grapples with overcapacity in everything from steel, cement, glass, chemicals, and shipbuilding, to solar panels. It dropped to minus 2.2% in October.

The sheer scale of over-investment is epic. The country funneled $5 trillion into new plant and fixed capital last year - as much as Europe and the US combined - even after the Communist Party vowed to clear away excess capacity in its Third Plenum reforms. Old habits die hard.

All this is happening in a region of festering grievances and territorial disputes, with no Nato-style security structure - or for that matter EU-style soft governance - to damp down fires. The spokes of the diplomatic wheel connect by a perverse geography to Washington, a city retreating from Pax Americana.
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THE COMING PANIC IN RUSSIA Print E-mail
Written by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard   
Tuesday, 11 November 2014
Russia is battening down the hatches for a long battle with the West, expecting sanctions to last until at least 2017 and admitting that capital flight has been significantly higher than previously claimed.

The central bank slashed its growth forecast for next year to zero and warned of near-recession conditions until late in the decade. It said capital outflows would reach $128 billion this year.

The new realism ends the pretence that Russia is strong enough to weather the end of the commodity supercycle without suffering serious damage, or that Western sanctions are little more than an irritation. President Vladimir Putin had previously said the effect would dissipate within months.
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CONTAINING PUTIN Print E-mail
Written by Richard Rahn   
Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Russian President Vladimir Putin's clear goal is to re-establish as much of the Russian Empire (1721-1917) as he can. At its greatest extent, the Russian Empire included the territories of the old Soviet Union, most of Eastern Europe, Finland and Alaska (up to 1866).

Mr. Putin knows the next U.S. president is unlikely to be as indecisive and reluctant to act as President Obama. He also faces falling demand for Russian oil and gas and unexpected price declines, which may cause him to run through Russia's considerable financial reserves. Accordingly, the pressure is on Mr. Putin to act quickly.

The Russian economy is now little more than a petro-state, relying on oil and gas, which account for 68 percent of its total exports, and more than half of its government revenue. Much of Russia's manufacturing base evaporated after the end of the Soviet Union. The ruble has fallen more than 30 percent against the dollar since the beginning of this year. As a result, inflation is accelerating (more than 8 percent at the moment) as imports become more and more expensive.

Thus Mr. Putin is both dangerous and vulnerable.  He must be contained.  Let's see how.

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