Thursday, April 2nd 2015
The Oasis for
Rational Conservatives

To The Point News
Written by Richard Rahn   
Wednesday, 01 April 2015

Do you think the government should be able to seize your property if you have not been convicted of any crime?

Most people are not aware that one of the most odious activities of federal, state and local tax and police authorities is that of "asset forfeiture." Asset forfeiture laws allow law enforcement to seize and keep property of individuals and businesses without a criminal conviction.

The practice has been rife with abuse by law enforcement officials, often using seized property of innocent individuals for their own use. As a result of the outcries about the abuse, there was a unanimous vote by both Republicans and Democrats in the House and Senate in New Mexico to end the practice of civil asset forfeiture in the state. The bill now awaits the signature of Gov. Susana Martinez.

Former federal prosecutor and director of the Justice Department's Asset Forfeiture Office, Brad Cates, now a resident of New Mexico, is one of the leading advocates of repeal of asset forfeiture laws at both the state and federal levels.

Mr. Cates and the first director of the federal Asset Forfeiture Office, Judge John Yoder, in an article in The Washington Post last September, wrote: "We find it particularly painful to watch as the heavy hand of government goes amok. The program began with good intentions but now, having failed in both purpose and execution, it should be abolished."

President Obama's nominee for attorney general, Loretta Lynch, the current U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York, strongly defended civil asset forfeiture during her Senate confirmation hearings, despite major abuses by her own office. This may now be jeopardizing her confirmation.

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Written by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard   
Wednesday, 01 April 2015

The long-simmering struggle between Saudi Arabia and Iran for Mid-East supremacy has escalated to a dangerous new level as the two sides fight for control of Yemen, reminding markets that the epicenter of global oil supply remains a powder keg.

Brent oil prices spiked 6% to $58 a barrel after a Saudi-led coalition of ten Sunni Muslim states mobilized 150,000 troops and launched air strikes against the Iranian-backed Houthi militias in Yemen, prompting a furious riposte from Tehran.

Analysts expect crude prices to command a new "geo-political premium" as it becomes clear that Saudi Arabia has lost control over the Yemen peninsular and faces a failed state on its 1,800 km southern border, where Al Qaeda can operate with near impunity.

The Saudis face an impossible dilemma. The harder they hit the Houthis, the greater the danger of a power vacuum that can only benefit Al Qaeda and Islamic State groupings that already control central Yemen. They are among the most lethal of the various Al Qaeda franchises. A cell from that area was responsible for the Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris.

Yemen is the latest country swept up an epic struggle for mastery between the Sunnis and Shias across the Middle East that some have compared to the Catholic-Protestant blood-letting of the Thirty Years War in 17th Century Europe.  Could this struggle end up tearing Saudi Arabia apart?
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Written by Dr. Jack Wheeler   
Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Rabaul, New Britain Island, Papua New Guinea.  The Brits called him George, a Melanesian native of Rabaul born here in 1934.  He was 8 years old when the Japanese invaded and seized this island from the Brits - who took it and all of German New Guinea after World War I.

George showed me where the Japanese kept the Australian and British prisoners they captured, all overgrown now.  Hidden in the bush, he watched as they were hung or beheaded, and then... eaten.  "The officers thought human liver was a delicacy," he said.  "The soldiers would cut off pieces of thighs and arms to fry in strips."

I recount George's eyewitness not to guilt-monger, as I'm aware of how difficult it was for TTPers of Japanese ancestry to read The Lesson of Iwo Jima last week. 

The evidence for Japanese cannibalism during WWII is extensive, along with numerous other hideous atrocities.  Entire cultures and societies have the capacity to go criminally insane, as do individuals. 

One of the most recurrent themes in history is barbaric savagery - from the constant blood feuds of primitive tribes to the Mongols of Genghiz Khan to the Reformation's Thirty Years War to Stalin's genocidal murder of millions of Ukrainians and Hitler's of Jews.

There is a famous scene in the movie classic The African Queen, when Bogart tells Hepburn such savagery is "natural" - and Hepburn responds that "Nature is what we were put here on earth to rise above."

Christianity offers a way to do this for individuals - but how can an entire culture, an entire people rise above their past?

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Written by Jack Kelly   
Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Who's been reading Hillary Clinton's email?

"She thinks they're erased," said Bob Woodward of the Washington Post, whose reporting (with Carl Bernstein) brought the Watergate scandal to light. "The Chinese or Iranians probably have them."

Hillary's private intelligence network reminds him of Iran Contra, and of the scandal involving ex-CIA officer Ed Wilson, who was convicted in 1983 of illegally selling weapons to Libya, said Jeff Gerth, who wrote with Sam Biddle an investigative report on it.

Ms. Clinton conducted official business on a private server to evade the requirements of federal law.  But what's really bad about what Hillary did is private servers like hers are notoriously easy to hack.

Her personal emails could have become "a priority target for foreign intelligence services," the chairmen of the Senate committees on Foreign Relations, Intelligence, and Homeland Security said in a letter to the State Department's inspector general.

Her obsession with secrecy has caused some to call Hillary "the Democrats' Nixon." Which may be unfair to Nixon.
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HALF-FULL REPORT 03/27/15 Print E-mail
Written by Jack Kelly   
Friday, 27 March 2015

Evidently the Army doesn't agree with National Security Adviser Susan Rice that Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl -for whom President Obama swapped five Taliban leaders, and may have paid a hefty ransom --served with "honor and distinction."

The New York Post thinks a court martial for Bergdahl will make an Iran deal a harder sell. Not many Americans will trust a president who swapped five terrorist leaders for "one deserting weasel" to make a good one.

Rebuffs from the mullahs intensify Zero's efforts to appease them. He's ordered U.S. air strikes in support of Iran's forces in Iraq. The Iranian militias Obama is supporting are more dangerous than ISIS, said retired Gen. David Petraeus, who is advising him on Iraq.

Yemen is in chaos. Shiite Houthi rebels linked to Iran have ousted President Abed-Rabbo Mansour Hadi and dissolved Parliament. The U.S. embassy has been closed, vital intelligence documents lost. Some have been turned over to Iran. But White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest - aka Baghdad Bob - insisted yesterday Yemen is an anti-terror success story.

The FBI disrupted a plot by ISIS supporters to kill "scores" of soldiers at a U.S. military base.

NATO's new Secretary General was in Washington for three days this week, but President Obama wouldn't interrupt his busy schedule of ESPN watching and golf to meet with him.

Dingy Harry Reid is hanging it up.

Why of course it will be all right for a group affiliated with ISIS to conduct a training camp for students at Cornell, Joseph Scaffido, the assistant dean for students, said in response to a question from what he thought was a Moroccan student.
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Written by Dr. Jack Wheeler   
Tuesday, 24 March 2015


Iwo Jima.  This is Mount Suribachi from the air.  The memorial where the Marines planted the American flag in Joe Rosenthal's iconic photo is at the bare patch on the rim above the area of white rocks on the right.

I took the picture flying here with over 30 Marines who fought here 70 years ago, all in their late 80s-early 90s today.  The experience of walking the black sands of Iwo Jima and standing on top of Suribachi with them was emotionally overpowering.

This is the 70th anniversary of the Marine victory at Iwo Jima, and you may have seen the news stories.  Here's one from the London Daily Mail.  The battle was fought from February 19 to March 26, 1945 - 36 days in which 6,871 Marines were killed and 19, 217 wounded (out of a total invasion force of some 70,000). 

The lessons to be learned here have the most profound relevance to today.  Here they are...
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Written by Jack Kelly   
Thursday, 26 March 2015

Monday (3/23) was the fifth anniversary of passage of Obamacare. Seven Democrat senators marked it by asking for delay of yet another provision of the law.

Putting companies with 51 to 100 employees in the costlier "small group" market could be "harmful and disruptive," they said in a letter to HHS Secretary Silvia Burwell.

The uninsured should be given another chance to avoid the fine for not having health insurance, three House Democrats said in a letter to President Obama in February.

"If ObamaCare is so great, why do Democrats repeatedly try to hide its more unpleasant features?" Investors Business Daily asked then.

Here are the lies President Obama told, which he assured us were true, before the law was passed:
Written by Jack Kelly   
Tuesday, 24 March 2015

A week after announcing his "Race Together" campaign, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz walked it back. His baristas no longer will write "Race Together" on the coffee cups of customers, or try to engage them in "conversations" about race relations in America.

The response he got wasn't the applause Mr. Schultz was expecting.  Corey duBrowa, Senior Vice President of Global Communications, received so much negative feedback he deleted his Twitter account the day after the campaign was announced.

PBS anchor Gwen Ifill, who is black, spoke for millions when she tweeted: "Honest to God, if you start to engage me in a race conversation before I've had my morning coffee, it will not end well."

Schulz's "moral exhibitionism," as Mona Charen described it, did not end well because Americans have had it with liberal race-baiting racism.  Here's why...
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Written by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard   
Thursday, 26 March 2015

The United States has handled its economic diplomacy with shocking myopia.

The US Treasury's attempt to cripple the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) before it gets off the ground is clearly intended to head off China's ascendancy as a rival financial superpower, whatever the faux-pieties from Washington about standards of "governance".

Such a policy is misguided at every level, evidence of what can go wrong when a lame-duck president defers to posturing amateurs in Congress on delicate matters of global geostrategy.

Washington has enraged Britain by trying to browbeat Downing Street into boycotting the project. It has forced allies and friendly countries across the Far East to make a fatal choice between the US and China that none wished to make, and has ended up losing almost everybody. Germany, France, and Italy are joining. Australia and South Korea may follow soon.

The AIIB is exactly what the world needs.  Here's why...
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Written by Robert H. Lee   
Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Why do some nations prosper while others do not?  Take a look at SE Asia. Singapore is prosperous and miles ahead in per capita income and technology than neighboring Malaysia and Indonesia.

In the Middle East, you see the same story. Out of the same desert sands as its neighbors, Israel has carved a high tech and prosperous democracy. But its neighbors languish in poverty and dictatorships.

Now, if you look at different communities living in the same country, you again see a stark difference...
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Written by Richard Rahn   
Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Lima, Peru.  When someone mentions Peru to you, what is the first visual image that pops into your head?

Inca Indians with their llamas in the Andes Mountains, looking at the some of the stone ruins of their ancient civilization? Yes, Peru still does have some of that, but most Peruvians are now employed in an increasingly rapid-growing and diverse economy.

In 1985, Peru was very poor with almost the lowest level of economic freedom in the world. In the early 1990s, former President Alberto Fujimori began major economic reforms. These reforms have continued through a series of administrations, including that of the current president, Ollanta Humala.

Peru is now listed as the 20th most-free economy in the world, according to the Economic Freedom of the World 2014 Annual Report.

As a result of the economic liberalization and increase in economic freedom...
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Written by To The Point News   
Friday, 27 March 2015

HALF-FULL REPORT 03/20/15 Print E-mail
Written by Jack Kelly   
Friday, 20 March 2015

Who knew St. Patrick was Jewish? Tuesday, March 17 was a great day for the Irish, a greater day for Israelis; a bad day for the putz in the White House and for the Lying Swine; a very bad day for the mullahs in Tehran.

Zero plans to punish Israel for voting for the guy he doesn't like. "Every single Obama failure... is followed by a Prolonged Snit," says Ace.

That the White House was "doing its damndest to vilify him on the Sunday talk shows" indicates the carpet bombing of Sen. Tom Cotton, R-AR has failed, said William Bigelow of Breitbart News.

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected Monday the administration's request to lift the injunction issued by District Judge Andrew Hanen barring implementation of Zero's executive orders providing amnesty for illegal aliens. Hanen is peeved about having been lied to; may impose sanctions on the Justice Department.

The EPA wants to regulate backyard barbecues; monitor how long hotel guests spend in the shower. It's "burning the Constitution," said liberal Harvard law professor Laurence Tribe.

"Late Night" host Seth Meyers tried to ambush Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Tex, Tuesday on "climate change." It did not go as planned.

The Obama administration has shut down walk-in tax preparation centers where the IRS provided, for free, assistance in filling out their income tax forms to the poor and elderly, diverted the money to left wing nonprofits with ties to the administration.
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Written by Dr. Jack Wheeler   
Wednesday, 18 March 2015


One of our planet's most enjoyable voyages is sailing through Alaska's Inside Passage on a luxury cruiseship.  Even better, however, would be converting it into an Insider Passage, where in addition to the stupendous scenery and sumptuous onboard living, you gain a financial insider's knowledge on how to best protect your assets from government pickpockets.

This would be my friend Brian Jensen, CPA and president of Legacy Global Financial Group.  Brian is a featured speaker at The Platinum Vegas Rendezvous April 24-26 - and the extreme practical value of his advice on asset protection, advanced estate planning, and wealth transfer (passing your assets on to your family and loved ones) is a persuasive reason for you to be in Vegas with us.

Yet the Rendezvous lasts but a weekend.  An entire week with Brian would be vastly more valuable.  He's the only guy I know who has an optimistic positive attitude towards taxes - that's because he knows all the legal loopholes.  How much would it mean to you if you knew them too?
Written by Dr. Jack Wheeler   
Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Sanya, Hainan Island, South China Sea.  This is China's Florida, where Chinese Snowbirds escape from freezing their tuches off suffering Beijing's winter.  I am at Howard Johnson's Sanya Resort eating a cheeseburger and listening to a local rock band playing Roy Orbison's Pretty Woman, singing the lyrics in English.  

The place is gigantic with 1,000 rooms, and packed with Chinese - I am the only Westerner here.  The band now launches into an enthusiastic Beatles' Obla-dee-obla-dah, which brings back a flood of memories when I first heard it, dancing with my Hawaiian girlfriend Vonnie at a Honolulu night club in 1969.

The Red Guards were rampaging through China back then, egged on by Mao, while millions of Chinese were starving to death.  The scene before me now would have been considered a madman's hallucination in 1969. 

Then Mao finally died in 1976, and his successor, Deng Xiao Ping created a "birdcage economy" as the way for China to grow into an economic superpower yet retain a Communist Party monopoly of power.

The Chinese people were allowed to be songbang, unleashed and free to fly around in the cage to make money - but never allowed to escape from the Party's cage itself.  They accepted the bargain offered them - prosperity in exchange for loyalty - and the result was the most massive increase in national wealth in the shortest time in human history.

Today, the bargain between the Chicoms and the Chinese people - greater economic freedom for little or no political freedom - is breaking down.  The Party needs a new rationale for its monopoly of political power - and has found it in that most lethal of tyrant excuses, jingoistic nationalism and demonization of a foreign devil.

Guess who that is.
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