Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Commie Pope

My article in today's FrontPageMag:


Commie Pope

By Matthew Vadum

Two years into his reign, Pope Francis has emerged as an extreme socialist obsessed with the usual phony leftist problems such as manmade global warming, American institutional racism, and income inequality.

Muslims are indiscriminately slaughtering Christians around the world while Christianity itself seems on the verge of being eclipsed globally by Islam, but these things barely register with this pope.

This pseudo-intellectual pope keeps on spouting the same misanthropic Marxist platitudes as he hitches his papacy to global warming, the new international totalitarian cause. Sounding like Mao Zedong, Francis said a “bold cultural revolution” was needed to save the planet.

The pope ignores the keen insight of former Czech President Vaclav Klaus who likened environmentalists to watermelons: they are green on the outside and red on the inside. After the collapse of the Soviet Union leftists the world over migrated to the environmentalist movement and began regurgitating the party line, which is that human activity, and in particular, capitalism, is killing the planet. Mocking the Enlightenment, Francis accepts their unscientific drivel on faith and in the process transports the papacy back to the Dark Ages.

Christians and communists are the same, Francis maintains. Communists are closeted Christians who “have stolen our flag,” he says. Why the pope would want to be associated in any way with communists is unclear. He ought to know that it was V.I. Lenin who said, “The more representatives of the reactionary clergy we manage to shoot, the better.”

Lenin and his successors in the U.S.S.R. followed through. Priests, monks, and nuns were scalped, crucified, given Communion with molten lead, drowned, strangled, and thrown into cauldrons of boiling tar. In Republican Spain, nuns were raped before being shot, and people associated with the church were forced to swallow rosary beads, thrown down mine shafts, and made to dig their own graves before being buried alive in them.

Anyone with eyes knows that the proliferation of capitalism over the past two decades has lifted a billion people out of dire poverty — and in coming decades is projected to rescue another billion from pauperism — but Francis robotically slams global capitalism, or “globalization” as the Left calls it, foolishly blaming markets for poverty. Markets, not handouts, accomplish humanitarian feats that the Roman Catholic Church could never, ever hope to match.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Occupy Wall Street Mainstreams Communism

My article in today's FrontPage magazine:


Occupy Wall Street Mainstreams Communism

By Matthew Vadum

Though many have declared the Occupy Wall Street movement a failure, it won a major propaganda victory when it forced the phony political issue of “income inequality” into the national political debate, according to one of its leaders in a new article.

The article, titled The Triumph of Occupy Wall Street, appears at the Atlantic, the home of radical leftists, market participants in the racial grievance industry, and mushy moderates.

It was written by radical left-winger Michael Levitin, a co-founder of The Occupied Wall Street Journal, an OWS “affinity group.” (Its website had not been updated in 1,000 days at time of writing.) The article is a mixture of truth and bald-faced lies that slavishly defends a philosophy of failure and a movement that is based on Marxist lies, as David Horowitz and John Perazzo demonstrated in their pamphlet Occupy Wall Street: The Communist Movement Reborn. Despite the various problems with Levitin’s article, he points to an unfortunate side-effect of the short-lived movement: the left has become more bold in its open promotion of communist themes and ideology and is pushing them into mainstream politics like never before.

The fairly recent sharpening of rhetoric in which the mythical “one percent” are depicted as the class enemies of everyone else is new in the American experience. Not everyone accepts the frame, but few challenge it, even among conservatives.

This national brainwashing through the power of repetition has boosted left-wing causes such as organized labor’s destructive push for a $15 an hour minimum wage. It has helped greens advance their antisocial causes such as opposition to fracking, opposition to the Keystone XL pipeline, and a divestment movement on college campuses that claims to have forced universities and institutional investment funds to unload $50 billion in fossil fuel investments. It has also emboldened left-wingers to push for student loan forgiveness and step up their attacks on the First Amendment by pushing a constitutional amendment that would reverse the Citizens United ruling and overturn the ancient legal principle that corporations are “persons” capable of raising funds and suing and being sued. In other words, the Left is waging a full-scale war on both the Bill of Rights and the legal concept of limited liability, the beating heart of free enterprise.

Monday, June 8, 2015

The Progressive Crime Wave

My article in today's FrontPageMag:


The Progressive Crime Wave

By Matthew Vadum

After two decades of falling crime rates nationwide, rising levels of intense cop-hatred across America appear to be contributing to a spike in violent crime in major cities, according to leading scholar Heather Mac Donald.

The “most plausible explanation of the current surge in lawlessness is the intense agitation against American police departments over the past nine months,” writes Mac Donald, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, in a recent Wall Street Journal op-ed.

Some of the anger in the streets that has turned into rioting and looting sprees is concocted, bought and paid for by radical anti-American financier George Soros. Much of the rest of it has been inspired by the community organizer in the White House and his minion, the former Attorney General Eric Holder. The mainstream media has been playing a supporting role, turning every police shooting of a person of color into a cause célèbre, regardless of the circumstances leading to the shooting.

“Gun violence in particular is spiraling upward in cities across America,” Mac Donald contends.

“In Baltimore, the most pressing question every morning is how many people were shot the previous night,” she writes. “Gun violence is up more than 60% compared with this time last year, according to Baltimore police, with 32 shootings over Memorial Day weekend. May has been the most violent month the city has seen in 15 years.”

Mac Donald continued:
In Milwaukee, homicides were up 180% by May 17 over the same period the previous year. Through April, shootings in St. Louis were up 39%, robberies 43%, and homicides 25% … Murders in Atlanta were up 32% as of mid-May. Shootings in Chicago had increased 24% and homicides 17%. Shootings and other violent felonies in Los Angeles had spiked by 25%; in New York, murder was up nearly 13%, and gun violence 7%. Those citywide statistics from law-enforcement officials mask even more startling neighborhood-level increases. Shooting incidents are up 500% in an East Harlem precinct compared with last year; in a South Central Los Angeles police division, shooting victims are up 100%.
Many of these murder victims are black Americans, Mac Donald said last week on Sean Hannity’s TV show.
These are the black lives that should matter to the Al Sharptons of the world. When the police back off, innocent black people get killed. And my speculation — and I don’t know this for sure, but we’ve been enduring nine months of really extreme anti-cop hysteria that is premised on the falsehood that the police are the biggest threat facing young black men today.
That police are the greatest threat to young black males is not supported by the evidence but police officers respond to public pressure like members of any other profession. Cops are “hearing the message that when they engage in proactive policing, they are abusing the community,” she said.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Why Rand Paul Won’t Fight

My article in today's FrontPageMag:


Why Rand Paul Won’t Fight

By Matthew Vadum

Republican presidential candidate Rand Paul really isn’t into the fight against America’s Islamofascist enemies.

It’s just not his thing.

And it’s not that Paul, like so many left-wingers out there, hates America. He doesn’t hate the country of his birth. But his hardline libertarian political views make it very difficult for him to care about the Global War on Terror. That’s why he didn’t mind allowing a law that gave the federal government tools to fight terrorist groups to sunset a few days ago. That battle in Congress over the reauthorization of the USA PATRIOT Act brought the flawed philosophy of Rand Paul into sharp focus.

Paul’s beliefs may also help to explain why he has been doing things that quite rightly infuriate other Republicans, such as palling around with left-wing racial arsonist Al Sharpton and expressing skepticism about anti-vote fraud laws. In order to stop being characterized as some kind of extremist by the media, he’s sucking up to reporters trying to show them what he has in common with them.

Libertarians, with their often fanatical distrust of government, are often drawn to conspiracy theories. This may help to explain some of his erratic behavior. Sounding like a stereotypical angry left-wing Democrat during George W. Bush’s presidency, Paul suggested in a 2009 speech that former Vice President Dick Cheney supported the Iraq War because in the past he worked for Halliburton Co., a corporate boogeyman the Left loves to hate.

Paul previously embraced “One World Government” conspiracy theories, including those concerning the Bilderberg Group, a closed-door annual conference of influential political and financial figures from across the globe. In a 2010 interview, Paul was asked what he knew about the Bilderberg Group.

“Only what I’ve learned from [radio talk show host] Alex Jones,” Paul replied. “I’m not probably the world expert on it, but I think it’s people who get together, who are very wealthy people, who I think manipulate and use government to their own personal advantage.”

Paul said the Bilderbergs, who would derive financial benefits from “world government,” should be fought and exposed.

“[The Bilderberg Group] want[s] to make it out like they just want to help humanity and world government would be good for humanity,” Paul said. “Well guess what—world government’s good for their pocketbook. 

They’re very wealthy and they use government to make more money for themselves, and that’s where you expose them.”

Paul’s philosophy, which is more of a political alignment than a philosophy as such, is libertarianism.

Libertarians are an interesting bunch. Some are kooks. Some are reasonable and sensible; others bear more than a passing resemblance to anarchists and leftists. Some libertarians deny American exceptionalism.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

The Myth That Republicans Are Growing More Extreme

My article in today's FrontPageMag:


The Myth That Republicans Are Growing More Extreme

By Matthew Vadum

There is an insidious meme afoot that in the Obama era Democrats have been heroically restraining themselves by clinging to moderate policies while ideologically extreme Republicans have gone hog-wild in the pursuit of conservative purity.

Today’s Democratic Party makes common cause with the criminals who burn down poor people’s neighborhoods in American cities. And yet the Right is somehow alleged to be more susceptible to “extremism.”

Sharpening her class-warfare guillotine, Hillary Clinton calls for the “toppling” of the one percent. She copycats her potential rival, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), claiming that “the deck is stacked” in favor of the wealthy and powerful.

“My job is to reshuffle the cards,” Clinton says.

Yet Republicans, who haven’t singled out identifiable social groups for destruction, somehow get tagged as the radicals.

This alleged so-called asymmetric polarization by the GOP is just the latest iteration of the hoary media myth that Republicans are dangerous extremists and Democrats are reasonable moderates. It is popping up now because the two parties’ primary contests are heating up. The benighted masses need to be reminded by their betters what to think and how to vote.

In a May 31 Financial Times column titled “American socialism’s day in the sun,” garden-variety left-winger Edward Luce hails the recent entry of self-described socialist Bernie Sanders into the Democratic presidential race because, he claims, it is “dragging” frontrunner Hillary Clinton “leftward.”

Monday, June 1, 2015

Housing Panel at National Press Club Today

I will appear on a panel about the Left's ridiculous, destructive housing policies at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., today at 12 Noon.  It is scheduled to run till around 4 p.m.

Media are welcome.

The panel discussion is being hosted by RestoreAmericasMission.com, and is titled, "Reality Check: Fueling a 21st Century Recovery for All Americans."

 Here's a summary of the event from the group's website:

Restore America’s Mission (restoreamericasmission.com) is pleased to assemble a premier team of economists and analysts for a panel discussion at which we will reveal the path to economic growth, jobs, prosperity and opportunity. America is in imminent danger of repeating the policy mistakes that caused the nationwide mortgage collapse of 2007-8. We are committed to free market solutions and will discuss the following critical topics:

A Reality Check--Drivers of the Housing Collapse and the Mortgage Banking Crisis Clearing the Way--Solving Unaddressed Problems & Avoiding Disaster due to Bubbles and other Financial Calamities Driving Solutions--Clearing the Path to Economic Growth, and Prosperity through Free Market Reforms and Innovation
Restore America’s Mission panelists:

Peter Wallison - American Enterprise Institute

Steve Moore - Heritage Foundation

Rich Lowrie - Put Growth First

Peter Ferrara - Heartland Institute

Matthew Vadum - Capital Research Center 

Martin O'Malley's Disastrous Declaration

My article in today's FrontPage magazine:


Martin O'Malley's Disastrous Declaration

By Matthew Vadum

Former Baltimore Mayor Martin O’Malley’s (D) past came back to haunt him over the weekend during the carefully staged hometown announcement that he was running for president.

Although Baltimore’s advanced urban decay has something to do with the fact that the city hasn’t had a Republican mayor since 1967 when Theodore R. McKeldin left office, O’Malley was heckled and shouted at Saturday. Protesters were upset with the policies O’Malley, who frequently shows off his well-developed biceps while playing guitar and singing badly, introduced when he was the troubled city’s mayor from Dec. 7, 1999, through Jan. 17, 2007.

The liberal New York magazine has trashed O’Malley, saying he “worsened the decades-old tension between Baltimore police and the black community.” When O’Malley showed up in Baltimore during the civil unrest that followed the suspicious death in police custody of Freddie Gray, a young black career criminal, “his attempt to demonstrate leadership only wound up drawing attention to his role in creating the conflict.”

Although Mayor O’Malley’s zero-tolerance approach to policing “saw a dramatic reduction in crime … in 2010 the city paid $870,000 to settle a suit alleging that Baltimore police arrested thousands of people without probable cause during O’Malley’s tenure.”

After conspicuously considering running for president for two years, O’Malley was greeted at Federal Hill on the weekend by angry protesters who blame him for the aggressive policing policies he initiated in Baltimore when he was mayor and the destruction they claim those policies have wrought.

They held signs reading “F–k the police,” “Stop killer cops,” and “NOMALLEY.” They also shouted “You only care about money, O’Malley, you don’t care about the people! You lie!” and “700,000 arrests under your watch, O’Malley!”

Friday, May 29, 2015

The Left's Reign of Terror Continues in Baltimore

My article in FrontPageMag today:


The Left's Reign of Terror Continues in Baltimore

By Matthew Vadum

As Maryland’s largest city grieves for a mother and her 7-year-old son found shot to death, it is becoming clear that criminals emboldened by left-wingers are terrorizing the people of Baltimore like never before.

The city’s radical, left-wing, thug-loving mayor, Stephanie Rawlings-Blake (D), has emasculated the local police she despises and abandoned her constituents by giving criminals a green light to do as they please. Police officers have been ordered not to do their jobs which is just as well because many of them are quite justifiably terrified of doing their jobs in the current environment. Mobs of as many as 50 people now routinely assemble when police arrive at crime scenes. Are they serving as community watchdogs or are they there to intimidate cops? Maybe both.

At this rate it won’t be long before Baltimore dethrones Detroit as the premier municipal showcase for left-wing urban policy failures. Ominously, this is America’s Mad Max-like future if it continues on the suicidal course set by President Obama, a man whose proudest accomplishment has been to serve as a rabble-rousing Marxist community organizer.

While the still-warm corpses of the city’s newest murder victims were being processed by authorities yesterday, panelists at the George Soros-funded Center for American Progress in the nation’s capital laid the blame for the rising tide of violence in Baltimore on everyone except the perpetrators.

No people of color are responsible for their actions, panelists said or implied. It’s society’s fault. It’s capitalism’s fault. It’s the fault of “white privilege.” There are too many laws. There are too many cops. Corporations are too powerful and they are definitely not people. Campaign finance reform would level the playing field. Things would be better if tax rates were raised. Every left-wing shibboleth and cliche was dusted off and put to use at the agenda-setting think tank founded by John Podesta.

Also discussed was the profoundly racist Black Lives Matter movement that is built on demonstrable lies –for example, that Michael Brown of Ferguson, Mo., was an innocent gentle giant murdered by a black-hating white cop– and gross exaggerations about the state of race relations in America (or at least they were hyperbolic before Barack Obama moved into the White House).

The pro-felon brainstorming session was titled, “Toward a More Perfect Union: Bringing Criminal Justice Reform to Our Communities.”

Saul Alinsky-inspired slogans like “power perceived is power achieved” flew around the 10th floor conference room at the nearly two-hour seminar that was a smorgasbord of untruths, cant, and intellectual junk food.

Dressed in casual clothing and a baseball cap, the fast-talking, social justice peddling Rev. Heber Brown III of Pleasant Hope Baptist Church in North Baltimore, is a master of politically correct pap. The community organizing preacher uses tedious phrases like “building power,” “the institutional racism that is manifested in local communities,” “moving out of spaces of privilege,” and “rendering space to others.”

The problem with Baltimore and the rest of America is that “the system” is evil. By “the system,” he meant American norms and the nation’s free institutions.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Obama Amnesty Stays Shut Down

My new article in today's FrontPageMag:


Obama Amnesty Stays Shut Down

By Matthew Vadum

President Obama’s unilaterally imposed immigration amnesty plan will remain suspended for the time being, thanks to a federal appeals court ruling that serves as a desperately needed reminder to Americans that the United States is not supposed to be a one-man dictatorship.

On Tuesday two members of a three-judge panel of the New Orleans-based U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit allowed an injunction to remain in place that blocks Obama from moving forward with his immigration plan.

The ruling effectively extends the stay that was ordered in February by a courageous Texas-based federal judge, Andrew S. Hanen, who found that Obama probably exceeded his authority in unilaterally granting benefits to more than 4 million illegal aliens. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said at the time that the U.S. District Court ruling was a “major victory for the rule of law” and “a major turning point in the fight to stop Obama’s lawless amnesty.”

The Obama administration had asked the panel to lift Judge Hanen’s injunction and whittle down its scope but the appellate court determined that the government would probably lose on the merits when the case went to a full trial in Hanen’s court. The case arose out of litigation filed by Texas and 25 other states against Obama’s immigration initiative.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Hillary the Arms Dealer

My article in today's FrontPage magazine:


Hillary the Arms Dealer

By Matthew Vadum

While presidential candidate Hillary Clinton was America’s top diplomat the Department of State that she oversaw approved $165 billion worth of commercial arms sales to 20 nations whose governments forked over millions of dollars to the now-embattled Clinton Foundation.

According to an International Business Times report by David Sirota and Andrew Perez, “at least seven foreign governments that received State Department clearance for American arms did donate to the Clinton Foundation while Hillary Clinton was serving as secretary.” The article identified the seven nations as Algeria, Australia, Kuwait, Norway, Oman, Qatar, and Thailand.

Mainstream media’s surprisingly probing coverage of the unfolding Clinton Foundation donations-for-favors scandal suggests that reporters have turned on the Clintons in the age of Obama.

And the fact that the IBT piece was co-authored by Marxist author and radio talk show host David Sirota adds to the growing pile of evidence that some of the more ideologically pure progressives in the Democratic Party are ganging up on Mrs. Clinton in order to help as yet undeclared presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).

Sirota, a former press aide to various left-wing lawmakers such as then-Rep. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), a self-described socialist who just launched his own quixotic presidential campaign, isn’t exactly an objective observer. A longtime left-wing activist who hurls invective at conservatives and Republicans, Sirota has slobbered over Warren, calling the anti-capitalism crusader “one of the most promising political leaders in a generation.”

Meanwhile, the $165 billion figure, “derived from the three full fiscal years of Clinton’s term as Secretary of State (from October 2010 to September 2012) — represented nearly double the value of American arms sales made to the those countries and approved by the State Department during the same period of President George W. Bush’s second term.”