Tuesday, February 28, 2017

March, 2017, Political Class Insanity, Part 1: Chelsea Is Out Of Touch, Starving In Venezuela, Another Social Security Scandal and More

It is the beginning of another month which means it is again time to review the latest political class insanity from Washington and around the world. Political class insanity takes many forms including the wasting of taxpayer wealth, criminal fraud within government programs, inane and stupid political quotes and actions, the inability to create and implement effective and efficient government programs, stupid and ill performing economic policies and strategies, and other forms of insanity that continue to evolve and surprise and shock us. 

Today and for all of the insanity posts this month, let’s start off with a welcome piece of honest political dialog. It comes from a State Department spokesperson. Mark Toner, who is about to start the daily State Department press briefing. In a joking matter, he makes the following quote: "Welcome to the State Department. I think we have some interns in the back. Welcome. Good to see you in this exercise in transparency and democracy." 

He then burst out laughing at his own quote, indicating he also knew what a joke the Obama administration has been, especially Mr. Toner’s State Department, when it comes to cover ups, lack of transparency, denial of Freedom of Information Act requests, the prosecution of whistleblowers, etc. But at least it was a little refreshing to finally hear some actual honesty out of Washington as we see from the actual clip of the news conference:


With that context of honesty, let’s see what other insanity has been going down:

1) Over the past couple of days we discussed the situation that government debt, at all levels of government in this country, is growing dangerously high. As we discussed many times in this blog, one reason for the runaway spending is the massive amount of fraud, crime, and inefficiencies of the Federal government spending programs. That bad reality was again demonstrated by a recent article by Elizabeth Harrington, writing for the Washington Free Beacon on February 22, 2017:

  • According to the inspector general of the Social Security Administration (SSA), the SSA incorrectly paid out $1 billion to people who did not have a Social Security number.
  • Let that sink in for a few minutes: people without a Social Security number actually got payments totalling $1 billion from the SSA, insane.
  • The $1 billion improperly went to 22,426 of people without Social Security numbers.
  • The inspector general concluded that: “Furthermore, unless it takes corrective action, we estimate SSA will pay about $182.5 million in benefits, annually, to representative payees who do not have an SSN or paper application supporting their selection.” 
  • These payments were made to people who served as representatives of people who did not have the ability to apply for SSA disability benefits on their own but the inspector general found that the SSA paid $853.1 million in benefits since 2004 to individuals who had been terminated as representative payees by the SSA.
  • SSA benefits were also paid to illegal immigrants through this representative system.
$1 billion paid out for no reason, just a small brick in the $20 TRILLION national debt.

2) According to an ongoing Gallup poll, the credibility of the mainstream press has been deteriorating for a long time,with currently only about one in three Americans trusting the mainstream press. I would bet that recent comments by Mika Brzezinski of MSNBC is not going to turn that trend around any time soon. On a recent episode of her morning news show she claimed that controlling “exactly what people think” is the job of the media. 

I always thought it was the job of the media to present facts and reality as honestly as possible and let citizens make their own assessment and develop their own thoughts and positions based on unbiased news reports. I never thought, and I would bet that most Americans do not want their thoughts controlled by large mass media corporations. Specifically her words were: "Well, I think that the dangerous, you know, edges here are that he [Trump] is trying to undermine the media and trying to make up his own facts. And it could be that while unemployment and the economy worsens, he [Trump] could have undermined the messaging so much that he can actually control exactly what people think. And that, that is our job." 

She sounds a little jealous, doesn’t she, “that is our job.” How dare the President try to get his message out to the people, i.e. explain his reasons for his actions. In her mind, it is the job of the media to tell you what you need to know and how to think. In the Soviet Union, with its Tass news agency and Pravda, maybe she would be right, but in America the purpose of the press should be to inform people, not form opinions for people. How insulting and how typical.

The video of her remarks can be seen at:


3) Liberals and Democrats are constantly looking for ways to expand government’s involvement and interference in our lives “for our own good.” This results in higher taxes and less freedom, an extreme example of which is playing out in Venezuela. There, a socialist government has taken over most aspects of citizens lives with dire, dire consequences, of which the following details from an Associated Press report show:

  • The government in that country has screwed things up so bad that the basic necessity of basic food is now difficult to obtain.
  • A new nationwide study across Venezuela has found that 75% of the population has lost an average of 19 pounds over the past year due to the lack of food.
  • And the poorer you are, the more weight you are likely to have lost.
  • The 2016 Living Conditions Survey was conducted with 6,500 families.
  • The study also found that 32.5% of those surveyed eat meals only one to two times a day, up threefold from the same survey results done last year when that figure was only 11.3%.
  • Despite having the potential for high living conditions, given the country’s access to vast oil reserves, 82% of the country lives in poverty.
  • Government interference in the market has also caused shortages of all consumer goods, vital medicines, and the currency as lost 80% of its value in just the past year.
  • 93.3% of those surveyed said that their family income is not enough to cover their food needs, resulting in far less meat being eaten which has been replaced by food types like potatoes.
  • 65% admitted keeping children at home because of food-related reasons — including filling in for their parents in the long food lines.
  • Government policies has caused inflation to be about 700% in the past year.
The wonders of socialism and allowing politicians to dictate all aspects of your life, you know they will screw it up and Venezuela is an extreme but instructive case.

4) Washington politicians have shown time and time again how out of touch they are with reality. They live among themselves, rarely dealing with real live constituents outside of the Beltway, they are almost always rich, earning more than three times the median household income so they are able to send their kids to private schools with other rich politicians' kids and hang out with other rich people, both inside and outside of politics, so they never really get to experience reality. From George Bush long ago not knowing that bar scanners rang up your groceries in a supermarket to Hillary Clinton having no idea that should would lose states in the past Presidential election that she was positive she would win, being out of touch is a politician trademark.

And apparently politicians’ kids are not much better dealing with reality. Consider the recent idiocy spouted by Chelsea Clinton. She recently stated that it was “horrifying” that U.S. customs agents had recently deported an illegal immigrant that had been arrested seven times. This illegal immigrant’s background included the following aspects, as reported by Brian Anderson of the Downtrend website on February 16, 2017:

  • The female illegal immigrant had been deported six times previously and had returned to Mexico once voluntarily.
  • Customs agents received information that the female was back in the country and was someone who had recently been sentenced to 12 months in jail for possession of stolen mail and illegal entry into the country.
  • In addition, the female had an alleged criminal history that includes convictions for false imprisonment and probation violations in 2013, assault, probation violation and domestic violence in 2011 and false imprisonment-minor-parental in 2010.
  • So for at least six years, the U.S. taxpayer has been paying for law enforcement, court, and prison costs for this illegal immigrant who has left and illegally reentered the country at least seven times.
  • If this is not a logical, common sense, textbook case of someone that we do not want or need in this country, this is the example. Unless you are Chelsea Clinton, who tweeted out the following message of her personal disgust with this situation: “I need a thesaurus. What’s another word for horrifying? Sick? Awful? Running out of adjectives these days that mean unconscionably terrible.” 
  • Is it because this illegal immigrant is a transexual individual that Chelsea thinks she should be exempt from current laws? That this person’s criminal history, which includes the serious crime of false imprisonment, does not matter and our immigration laws should not apply because she is a transsexual? That we should spend limited taxpayer money on handling this illegal individual, depriving Americans who are homeless, hungry, and drug addicted the extra care and extra support they need and could get if we did not have to spend so many resources deporting or imprisoning a criminal so many times, even if she was a transexual? So out of touch, so insane.
That will do it for today’s insanity, we are just getting warmed up, much more political class insanity to follow.

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