Friday, January 31, 2014

D’Souza’s Indictment and Double Standards

My article from today's FrontPage Magazine:

Dinesh D'Souza with Matthew Vadum, 2007.

D'Souza's Indictment and Double Standards

By Matthew Vadum

The Obama administration’s indictment of critic Dinesh D’Souza on campaign finance law violations is a reminder that it’s dangerous to be in the opposition when the president is a lawless strongman who knows the media will protect him no matter what.

Democratic malefactors remained at large on Friday as D’Souza pleaded not guilty to charges that he directed two individuals to each make $10,000 donations to the campaign of Wendy Long, an unsuccessful Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, on the understanding he would reimburse them, which he did not long after.

The court in New York reportedly imposed unusually tough release conditions on the bestselling conservative author, ordering him to post a $500,000 bond and not to leave the country.

D’Souza’s attorney told U.S. District Judge Richard M. Berman that the facts were more or less not in dispute. “I think there’s a dispute over how it happened and whether what happened violated federal law,” Benjamin Brafman said.

As The Blaze reports,
Outside court, Brafman said there was no corrupt intent, a necessary component of the law, in his client’s actions, and he said the $20,000 in donations fell short of the $25,000 required to bring a criminal case. He said it was a situation that was normally resolved with a fine rather than criminal charges. He said there was no request by D’Souza that Long do anything, and the Senate candidate had no knowledge that campaign finance rules had been violated. Brafman said D’Souza and Long had been friends since college and “at worst, this was an act of misguided friendship by D’Souza.”
So why was D’Souza subjected to serial killer treatment, arrested, incarcerated, maybe perp-walked, for something that’s roughly the campaign finance law equivalent of a traffic ticket?

Could it be because D’Souza went too far in criticizing the notoriously thin-skinned Obama with his compelling, scathingly critical documentary, 2016: Obamas America? The movie brought in an astounding $33 million in revenue, making it the second most popular political documentary in U.S. history behind Michael Moore’s lie-filled, anti-George W. Bush temper tantrum from 2004, Fahrenheit 

Al Qaeda In Jerusalem

My article from the Jan. 23, 2014 FrontPage Magazine:

Al Qaeda In Jerusalem

By Matthew Vadum

Israeli security forces have shut down a massive al-Qaeda plot coordinated by terrorist mastermind Ayman al-Zawahiri that involved attacking the Jerusalem Convention Center and the American embassy in the diplomatic center of Tel Aviv.

This is believed to be the first time that al-Qaeda chief al-Zawahiri has gotten personally involved in engineering strikes within Israel.

The foiled plot is a sobering reminder that al-Qaeda has been experiencing a comeback in the Obama era.

Weeks before the November 2012 election Obama bragged, “al-Qaeda is on the path to defeat and Osama bin Laden is dead.” It is true that al-Qaeda is “on the run,” but not in the sense that President Obama uses the term. The stock of the international Muslim terrorist network is experiencing a bull run in many corners of the world, lifted higher by the profuse pro-Islamist promises of appeasement offered by Secretary of State John Kerry.

Meanwhile, the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) told the Jerusalem Post Wednesday that it arrested three Palestinians from east Jerusalem recruited online by a Gaza-based al-Qaeda operative. The three men were preparing to launch a wave of terror attacks involving bombs and firearms that would have targeted the Jerusalem Convention Center, a bus route, the U.S. embassy in Tel Aviv, and the emergency responders who would have attended to the wounded at the attack sites.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Schumer's Plan to Abolish the Tea Party

My article from today's American Thinker:

Schumer's Plan to Abolish the Tea Party

The Democrats' new much-vaunted master plan for annihilating the Tea Party movement calls for aggressive class warfare, demagoguery, and lying about the beliefs, motives, and goals of Tea Party supporters, Sen. Chuck Schumer revealed yesterday.

Echoing President Obama's infamous "bitter clingers" remarks, the New York Democrat argued that Tea Party supporters are cartoonish figures who are easily ridiculed.

Invoking all the usual liberal cliches about conservatives, Schumer said the Tea Party is successor to "the Know-Nothings, Prohibitionists, Father Coughlin, and Huey Long." In other words, he believes the movement is a collection of hicks, yahoos, neo-Luddites, fascists, male chauvinists, and racists fearful of what leftist academics might call The Other.

"Tea Party adherents see an America that's not reflective of themselves, and the America they have known, and they just don't like it." They are bothered by changes in the "cultural, technological, and demographic makeup" of the nation. It angers them that "white Anglo-Saxon men are exclusively not running the country anymore."

Schumer said his fellow Democrats in the U.S. Senate plan to subject the public to a massive, presumably very boring post-constitutional civics lesson from now until the congressional elections in November.
Democrats "must stop playing defense and go on offense when it comes to the need for government," Schumer said as public support for ObamaCare hit a new record low. "We must state loudly and repeatedly we believe government is often a necessary force for good."

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Putin’s Showdown With Terror

My article in today's FrontPage Magazine:

Putin’s Showdown With Terror

By Matthew Vadum

Russian President Vladimir Putin is augmenting security for the upcoming Winter Olympics in southern Russia in the hope of preventing possible Islamic terrorist attacks at the international sporting event.

Putin tried to reassure Russian media that visitors will be safe at the Olympics that will take place from Feb. 6 through Feb. 23 in Sochi in the Caucusus mountains in the region of Krasnodar Krai on the Black Sea, not too far from Russia’s land border with Georgia. Islamists have already threatened to attack the games and authorities are searching for potential suicide bomber Ruzanna Ibragimova, the 22-year-old widow of a jihadist killed by Russian security forces who may have traveled from Dagestan to Sochi. Last week three security officers and four militants who may have been planning attacks on the Olympics were killed in a gunfight.

Parts of Russia are reportedly turning into armed camps as authorities crack down on protests and perceived anti-government activities in the sprawling nation with a significant Muslim minority.
About 40,000 members of Russia’s police and security forces will patrol the events, he said, and elite Spetsnaz fighters will be guarding against violent Muslim separatists.

“We will try to make certain that the security measures are not intrusive or too conspicuous, so they are not too noticeable for the athletes, the Olympics’ guests or journalists,” Putin said. “But at the same time, we will do our utmost to ensure that they are effective.”

Russian authorities have created a large security zone around Sochi, deployed thousands of extra police and troops, and are spending billions of dollars to keep the games safe. Submarines are patrolling the Black Sea coast while drones keep an eye on the host city from above. S-400 anti-aircraft missile systems are in place, capable of blowing hijacked aircraft out of the sky.

Sochi may as well have a giant bulls-eye painted over it. It stretches more than 60 miles and the Olympic Stadium, media complex, and ice hockey, speed skating, and figure skating facilities are located on the coast. A 44-mile express train route runs from the shore through the mountains to one of the two Olympic Villages, ski runs, and luxury hotels, generating headaches for security experts.

Critics are worried that Putin can’t guarantee security for athletes and tourists in the wake of last month’s Islamist bomb attacks in Volgograd that left more than 30 dead. The U.S. Department of State warns that Americans planning to visit Sochi should be vigilant about security because of potential terrorist threats, crime, and unreliable medical care.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Democratic Exodus

My article from the Jan. 17, 2014 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

Democratic Exodus

By Matthew Vadum

Terrified Democratic lawmakers are retiring in droves because they know it won’t be easy to survive the anti-establishment electoral tsunami expected to swamp Capitol Hill in November.

Democrats have every reason to feel depressed about the approaching midterm elections, according to famed psephologist and prognosticator Larry Sabato.

This will probably be “a good election year for the GOP,” Sabato says. Rattling off the main factors that appear to be driving this election cycle, Sabato opined,

The president is a Democrat and his approval is weak. The economy may be improving, based on GDP growth (4.1 percent in the third quarter), but voters still don’t believe their personal economy, at least, has picked up much. Instead, the major national issue of the moment is Obamacare, which at this point is a loser for Democrats. The structure of the election in the House and Senate also bends in the GOP direction.

Even those representing traditionally safe Democratic congressional districts know the political landscape is on-track for dramatic changes after this year’s midterm elections. Republicans are optimistic about picking up plenty of U.S. Senate seats this year. At least five Democrats are not seeking reelection. They are Max Baucus (Mont.), Tom Harkin (Iowa), Tim Johnson (S.D.), Carl Levin, (Mich.), and Jay Rockefeller (W.Va.).

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Will SCOTUS Reverse Obama’s Recess Appointment Power Grab?

My article from today's FrontPage Magazine:

Will SCOTUS Reverse Obama’s Recess Appointment Power Grab?

By Matthew Vadum

Speculation is running rampant in the nation’s capital that the Supreme Court is poised to strike down three purported recess appointments that President Obama used to unconstitutionally manipulate federal labor relations policy.

During oral arguments in National Labor Relations Board v. Noel Canning on Monday, the justices seemed uncomfortable with Obama’s Jan. 4, 2012 overreach in which he recess-appointed three members to the NLRB without bothering to wait for the U.S. Senate to recess. Obama’s goal was to pack the under-staffed federal body with likeminded leftists and give the NLRB the quorum it previously lacked to conduct official business. A defeat for Obama in this closely watched case could call into question every order issued by the NLRB since the date the appointments were made.

Incidentally, the NLRB itself shouldn’t even exist. It is a socialist anachronism left over from the New Deal that Obama uses to create new rules and regulations without having to go the normal route and ask Congress to pass a law. Obama’s toadies at the NLRB are hellbent on making America more like bureaucratic, dysfunctional Europe where labor disruptions and union violence are everyday occurrences.

During oral arguments this week nearly every member of the high court questioned the constitutionality of Obama’s NLRB appointments that were apparently carried out contrary to Article 2 of the U.S. Constitution.

Chief Justice John Roberts defended the Senate’s constitutional prerogative to approve nominees as a vital check on an out-of-control executive branch. Senators “have an absolute right not to confirm nominees that the president submits,” he said.

Left-leaning Justice Elena Kagan, an Obama appointee, told government counsel, ”The history is entirely on the Senate’s side, not your side.”

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The War on Poverty's Biggest Casualties

My article from the Jan. 10, 2014 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

The War on Poverty's Biggest Casualties

By Matthew Vadum

Fifty years after liberals launched their sacrosanct “War on Poverty,” Americans, and black Americans in particular, aren’t better off.

But neo-Marxist ideologue that he is, President Obama is determined to double-down on leftist failure, widening the so-called war by calling for the biggest welfare spending increases in American history— amounting to more than $10 trillion over a decade, according to the Heritage Foundation’s Robert Rector.

This War on Poverty that Obama wants to escalate came on the heels of the death of President John F. Kennedy.

As the country was reeling in shock just seven weeks after Kennedy was assassinated, his successor, President Lyndon B. Johnson, urged Congress to embark on a new metaphorical war effort against poverty. In that State of the Union address on Jan. 8, 1964, Johnson said, “Let this session of Congress be known … as the session which declared all-out war on human poverty and unemployment in these United States.”

This “unconditional war on poverty in America … will not be a short or easy struggle, no single weapon or strategy will suffice, but we shall not rest until that war is won,” Johnson said. ”The richest nation on earth can afford to win it. We cannot afford to lose it.”

The War on Poverty also gave taxpayers’ money to so-called community groups like ACORN and Saul Alinsky’s Industrial Areas Foundation in order to encourage them to agitate against the status quo. This, in turn, stimulated demand for more government spending as taxpayer dollars became a kind of ever-increasing subsidy for pro-Big Government activism. The federal government still hands out huge grants to left-wing groups to subsidize their efforts to take away our economic freedoms.

A half a century later, federal and state welfare spending, adjusted for inflation, is now 16 times greater. The country has spent $20.7 trillion in 2011 dollars over the past 50 years on welfare programs, far exceeding what the U.S. has spent on every war it has fought.

Already the federal government administers 80 different means-tested welfare programs. Government blew $916 billion on these programs in 2012 alone, and about 100 million Americans accepted aid from at least one of the programs, costing $9,000 per recipient on average, a figure, Heritage’s Rector notes, that doesn’t include Social Security or Medicare benefits.

Yet “victory” in the War on Poverty is nowhere in sight. In 2012, 15 percent of Americans lived below the poverty line, roughly the same percentage as in the mid-1960s. Currently, around 50 million Americans live below the poverty line, which the government defines as a four-member family earning $23,550 a year. And 47 million Americans receive food stamp benefits, 13 million more than when President Obama was first sworn in.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

A Killing Frost for Green Bosses

My article from the January 8, 2014 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

A Killing Frost for Green Bosses

By Matthew Vadum

Does a record-setting cold wave have anything to do with massive upheaval among the fear-mongering elite of professional left-wing environmentalism?

As the endlessly referenced Polar Vortex of Doom keeps the fruited plain in a deep freeze, it turns out several major environmentalist lobbies are shedding their current leadership.

This is happening despite the media’s nonstop, years-long, global warming propaganda assault, the presence of a radical, lawless left-winger in the White House and a Democratic stranglehold over the Senate. The voters can’t be bothered to care about this silly global warming issue.

In an amazing non-coincidence, Maggie Fox, CEO for Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project, is leaving her organization in the spring. Formerly known as the Alliance for Climate Protection, the group changed its name after a hard-fought push to enact cap-and-trade legislation fizzled.

National Wildlife Federation CEO Larry Schweiger, Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) President Frances Beinecke, Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) President Eileen Claussen, and Greenpeace USA’s youthful Executive Director Phil Radford are also decamping from their respective posts this year. (The Pew Center on Climate Change was relaunched as the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions in 2011.)

Could it be that the career eco-extremists, con artists, and meteorological Machiavellians selling global warming doom and gloom are finally beginning to realize that their current approach isn’t working?

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

58: That's how many books cite my work

I've been keeping a running tab of the books that reference my work and/or quote me.

Authors on the right, such as John Fund, Phyllis Schafly, Michael Reagan, David Horowitz, and Michelle Malkin rely on my research and commentary.

Authors on the left, such as Arianna Huffington, Thomas Frank, and Center for American Progress visiting fellow Shirley Sagawa, have also given my work a vote of confidence by relying on it.

Here is the list as of January 7, 2014:

* asterisk indicates New York Times bestseller

In reverse chronological order (sorted by year):

58) Dog Whistle Politics: How Coded Racial Appeals Have Reinvented Racism and Wrecked the Middle Class, by Ian Haney Lopez, Oxford University Press, 2014, page 160 

57) The Enemies Within: Communists, Socialists, and Progressives in the U.S. Congress, by Trevor Loudon, Pacific Freedom Foundation, 2013, p. 532n17

56) Impeachable Offenses: The Case for Removing Barack Obama from Office, by Aaron Klein and Brenda J. Elliott, WND Books, 2013, p. 300n13

55) Infiltrated: How to Stop the Insiders and Activists Who Are Exploiting the Financial Crisis to Control Our Lives and Our Fortunes, by Jay W. Richards, McGraw Hill, 2013, pp. 100, 260, 261

54) The Battle of the Three Wills: as it relates to good & evil, by H. Edward Schrier, Author House, 2013, page citation unknown

*53) Breakthrough: Our Guerrilla War to Expose Fraud and Save Democracy, by James O'Keefe, Threshold Editions, 2013, page 39, 71, 322n39, 323n71

52) Handbook of Research on Sport and Businessedited by S. Söderman, H. Dolles, Edward Elgar Publishing Inc., 2013, page 458

51) Change Agents: Alinskyian Organizing Among Religious Bodies, Volume 1, by Stephanie Block, CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2013, page citations unknown

Mumia Abu-Jamal’s Lawyer to Obama’s Justice Department

My article from today's FrontPage Magazine:

Mumia Abu-Jamal’s Lawyer to Obama’s Justice Department

By Matthew Vadum

President Obama’s nominee to be the nation’s top civil rights enforcer is a race-obsessed lawyer who tried to permanently free unrepentant cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal.

This radical so-called civil rights lawyer, Debo Adegbile, was until fairly recently head of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund. Like Attorney General Eric Holder, Adegbile is a staunch affirmative action supporter and doesn’t appear to believe that white Americans are entitled to civil rights protection. Currently he serves as senior counsel to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, which is chaired by Sen. Pat Leahy (D-Vt.).

It’s yet another nomination to high federal office in which Obama isn’t even trying to conceal his anti-American radicalism. “Obama’s nominee process involves finding the worst person on earth for that job or any job,” as Daniel Greenfield observes. “It’s a process that never fails.”

Interestingly, Adegbile has a personal story that’s similar to Obama’s. The DoJ nominee was raised by a single mother in the absence of her son’s Nigerian father, reports the Washington Post.

Under Adegbile’s leadership, NAACP LDF acted in several legal proceedings for the black leftist folk hero who has parlayed his 1981 murder of white Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner into a career behind bars. Born Wesley Cook, the former Black Panther often referred to affectionately in radical circles as simply “Mumia,” enjoys celebrity status on the Left and is a frequent guest speaker at college commencement ceremonies.

“The question of Abu-Jamal’s guilt is not a close call,” according to John Fund. “Two hospital workers testified that Abu-Jamal confessed to them: ‘I shot the motherf***er, and I hope the motherf***er dies.’ His brother, William, has never testified to his brother’s innocence even though he was at the scene of the crime. Abu-Jamal himself chose not to testify in his own defense.”

As Faulkner tried to arrest Abu-Jamal’s brother during a traffic stop, Abu-Jamal shot the policeman once in the back and then stood over him and shot him four more times at close range, once directly in the face. Multiple eyewitnesses were present during the crime.

Adegbile’s “nomination is an in-the-face appointment,” according to J. Christian Adams, a Justice Department whistle-blower who chronicled the vicious racial politics of the DoJ’s Civil Rights Division in his bestselling book,Injustice: Exposing the Racial Agenda of the Obama Justice Department.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Comrade De Blasio Takes Over

My article from the Jan. 2, 2014 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

Comrade De Blasio Takes Over

By Matthew Vadum

Communist-sympathizing radical Bill de Blasio has laid out an ambitious, far-left agenda as he begins what is destined to be a disastrous reign as New York’s 109th mayor.

Leveling left-wingers, with their perverse obsession with income equality, are looking eagerly to the city in the hope that the new mayor will “morph New York City’s municipal machinery into a closely watched laboratory for populist theories of government that have never before been enacted on such a large scale,” according to a fawning New York Times profile.

In a pie-in-the-sky inaugural address, de Blasio promised class-based hatred and civil unrest in pursuit of so-called social justice.

“We recognize a city government’s first duties: to keep our neighborhoods safe; to keep our streets clean; to ensure that those who live here – and those who visit – can get where they need to go in all five boroughs. But we know that our mission reaches deeper. We are called to put an end to economic and social inequalities that threaten to unravel the city we love. And so today, we commit to a new progressive direction in New York. And that same progressive impulse has written our city’s history. It’s in our DNA.”

De Blasio’s ascendancy could also help Democrats at the national level two years from now.

The New York Times’ Benghazi Revisionism

My article from the Dec. 30, 2013 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

The New York Times’ Benghazi Revisionism

By Matthew Vadum

To help put Hillary Clinton in the White House, the once-great New York Times has published a dubious report swallowing the Obama administration’s lies about the Sept. 11, 2012 Islamist attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya.

In an act of journalistic malfeasance, the agenda-setting newspaper of record concluded over the weekend that the once-obscure “Innocence of Muslims” YouTube video sparked the armed assault that left four Americans dead at the height of last year’s presidential election cycle. The newspaper also concluded that al-Qaeda wasn’t involved, ignoring the mountain of evidence suggesting al-Qaeda was involved.
Months of investigation by The New York Times, centered on extensive interviews with Libyans in Benghazi who had direct knowledge of the attack there and its context, turned up no evidence that Al Qaeda or other international terrorist groups had any role in the assault. The attack was led, instead, by fighters who had benefited directly from NATO’s extensive air power and logistics support during the uprising against Colonel Qaddafi. And contrary to claims by some members of Congress, it was fueled in large part by anger at an American-made video denigrating Islam.
Evidently the Old Gray Lady didn’t look too hard for the truth.

From the outset the Obama administration said that what happened in Benghazi was a spontaneous riot identical to what had taken place in Cairo, Egypt, a short time before.

The administration claimed that the Benghazi violence was a spontaneous protest that somehow got out of hand. The official line was that a demonstration outside the U.S. mission in Benghazi grew increasingly violent and that protesters unconnected to terrorist groups eventually stormed the facility.
Not long after the attack National Security Adviser Susan Rice told Fox’s Chris Wallace that,
the best information and the best assessment we have today is that in fact this was not a preplanned, premeditated attack. That what happened initially was that it was a spontaneous reaction to what had just transpired in Cairo as a consequence of the video. People gathered outside the embassy and then it grew very violent and those with extremist ties joined the fray and came with heavy weapons, which unfortunately are quite common in post-revolutionary Libya and that then spun out of control.
Weeks later the Obama administration changed its tune, admitting as more and more evidence accumulated that terrorist groups were involved in planning and carrying out the attack.

2014: A Bad Year for the Left?

My article from the Dec. 27, 2013 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

2014: A Bad Year for the Left?

By Matthew Vadum

Most political indicators point to a terrible 2014 for American leftism amidst an auspicious resurgence of conservatism throughout the nation.

As Americans continue to suffer in the weak Obama-era economy and as their anxiety over President Obama’s hated health care program grows, an electoral tsunami appears to be in the offing.

Americans have never bought into President Obama’s contention that income inequality was what he called “the defining challenge of our time.” The AP-Times Square New Year’s Eve Poll conducted by GfK shows under 1 percent considered that issue the most important news story of 2013. Topping the list of issues was the implementation of Obamacare which was deemed the number one issue in 2013 by 26 percent of respondents. The next-highest ranked issues were identified as the “death of Nelson Mandela” and the “federal government’s budget troubles: sequestration, the fiscal cliff and the government shutdown,” both weighing in at a mere 8 percent each.

Obama’s approval ratings continue to drop and Americans now consider big, overweening government to be the biggest threat to the nation. An astounding 72 percent of Gallup respondents now believe that big government poses a greater threat to the U.S. than big business or big labor, a record high since Gallup started asking the question almost a half century ago. “(The findings) may be partly a reaction to an administration that favors the use of government to solve problems,” the Gallup organization said in a quaint understatement.

Democratic strategists who say that the public is warming up to Obama and Obamacare  are in denial. 

La Loi, C’est Obama

My article from the Dec. 24, 2013 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

La Loi, C’est Obama

By Matthew Vadum

In a move worthy of a Third World banana republic, President Obama used his extraconstitutional lawmaking wand and secretly extended the Dec. 23 Obamacare enrollment cutoff by 24 hours, usurping the authority of Congress.

This is only the latest in a long series of capricious, imperial, impeachable, ad hoc adjustments that the 44th president has made to his creation. Each and every unilateral abridgment or abrogation of the Affordable Care Act, as monstrous as the statute may be, is an affront to the rule of law that is supposed to prevail in our constitutional republic. This rule by presidential decree creates legal and business uncertainty for insurers and the insured, as well as for employers and all health care market participants.

Not surprisingly, public support for Obamacare continues to fall, dropping five whole percentage points in a month to a new record low, according to a CNN/ORC poll. Barely a third of the public — 35 percent – now supports the law, down from 40 percent late last month, and just 16 percent of respondents said they expect their families will be better off when most of the law takes effect in 2014.

The completely unnecessary, mandated chaos of the Obamacare rollout is business as usual for embattled Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, who continues struggling to put out fire after fire in what seems destined to be a futile effort to make an unworkable program somehow work.

The Washington Post reports that
“Over the weekend, government officials and outside IT contractors working on the online marketplace’s computer system made a software change that automatically gives people a Jan. 1 start date for their new coverage as long as they enroll by 11:59 p.m. on Christmas Eve.”
The Obama administration apparently rationalized the one-day extension away, claiming it was needed in case the perpetually malfunctioning website strains under the weight of a sudden traffic boost from last-minute enrollees.

“Anticipating high demand and the fact that consumers may be enrolling from multiple time zones, we have taken steps to make sure that those who select a plan through tomorrow will get coverage for Jan. 1,” an HHS spokeswoman said yesterday.

In the nightmarish swirl of Kafkaesque arbitrariness that surrounds President Obama’s much touted signature legislative achievement, insurance companies reportedly won’t be able to refuse late registrants. Last week the administration decreed that individuals whose insurance plans were canceled may receive an exemption from the individual mandate imposed by the Affordable Care Act.

ObamaCare: A Christmas Gift from the Poor to the Rich

My article from the Dec. 20, 2013 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

ObamaCare: A Christmas Gift from the Poor to the Rich

By Matthew Vadum

The increasingly desperate Obama White House is encouraging Obamacare supporters to make Christmas a living hell for those Americans still not convinced that putting the federal government in charge of health care is a good idea.

Because Obamacare will go into an actuarial death spiral if enough young people refuse to enroll, and because it’s a day ending in a “Y,” it’s time for yet another sleazy, lowbrow attempt to strong-arm young, healthy Americans into buying overpriced Affordable Care Act-compliant insurance that they don’t need and in many cases can’t afford. And why is such health insurance unaffordable to the young and the poor? Because Obamacare imposes ridiculous, expensive mandates, for example, forcing old men to cover women’s birth control while forcing young people to cover geriatric medical care.

To trick young, poor, healthy people into subsidizing older, sicker, wealthier people, the Obama administration wheeled out First Lady Michelle Obama, America’s flamboyant answer to the shopping-crazed kleptocrat Imelda Marcos, to sell Obamacare coverage to those who don’t want it or need it.

And to appeal to the young “hipster” community, Obama’s stormtroopers at Organizing for Action (OfA) posted an ad on Twitter showing a young bespectacled man in one-piece pajamas, sitting on a comfortable couch with a warm drink. “Wear pajamas. Drink hot chocolate. Talk about getting health insurance,” reads the accompanying ad copy.

It might be funny if it weren’t so pathetic.

But to the incorrigible, true-believing leftists of the Obama administration, everything is political and nothing is sacred. Precious family time must give way for the good of the all-important state. In a spine-tinglingly creepy scene that might have come out of totalitarian East Germany or the Soviet Union, the Obamas lectured assembled mothers on the need to indoctrinate their children into embracing the three-year-old health care law that is tearing America apart.

Microsoft Hacks Into

My article from the Dec. 19, 2013 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

Microsoft Hacks Into

By Matthew Vadum

As part of the continuing charade that Obamacare can actually be fixed, the Obama administration is hiring Microsoft Corp. executive Kurt DelBene to revamp the super-expensive, taxpayer-funded vortex of malware that is the website.

It is all part of the White House’s unrelenting drive to reinforce the left-wing narrative that the misnamed Affordable Care Act can succeed without dramatically disrupting society.

Americans increasingly understand that Obamacare is a deliberately cruel, cynical, Machiavellian vehicle to redistribute wealth, cripple private-sector insurance companies, and open the door to the future imposition of a sclerotic, bureaucrat-dominated, single-payer system on the United States of America. 

In other words, with this latest hire Obama and company are even more aggressively pretending that their hated through-the-looking-glass health care system can work without causing painful, debilitating socioeconomic upheaval.

As a senior adviser to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, DelBene, who was president of the Microsoft Office division, will oversee repairs to the perpetually malfunctioning, insecure HHS website and health-insurance exchanges.

Sebelius: Above the Law?

My article from the Dec. 13, 2013 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

Sebelius: Above the Law?

By Matthew Vadum

Top congressional watchdog Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) had to warn Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius this week that obstructing a congressional investigation is a federal crime.

Sadly, we have reached the point in America at which members of President Obama’s cabinet aren’t even squeamish anymore about flouting court orders and legally enforceable congressional directives because they feel secure in the expectation that they will never be held to account. These Democrats know that their misdeeds will not see the light of day because the Obama-worshipping media and opposition party lawmakers are either unduly, unprofessionally sympathetic to Obama’s agenda or are too afraid to confront the president out of fear of being tarred as a racist.

Lying and stonewalling have served the Obama administration well so far.

In June 2012, Eric Holder was held in criminal contempt of Congress by the House of Representatives in a 255-67 vote for refusing to turn over documents tied to the bungled Fast and Furious gun-running operation. That was the first time a U.S. attorney general had ever been held in criminal contempt by the House. Legal proceedings against Holder, arguably the most corrupt U.S. attorney general of all time, could be initiated after he leaves office. Impeachment and removal from office following a trial in the Senate are also possibilities that are now being discussed on Capitol Hill.

In light of Sebelius’s failure to cooperate with congressional investigators regarding obstruction allegations, Issa, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, felt it necessary to remind the Obama cabinet member that her refusal to produce documents demanded by lawmakers is punishable according to law.

The panel has been looking into the badly botched implementation of Obamacare as well as the persistent problems with the horrendously expensive, near-useless website that the nation’s uninsured are supposed to use to sign up for health insurance coverage. Issa has demanded documents and HHS hasn’t handed them over.

Specifically, Issa is calling into question legally dubious actions taken by the HHS. The department has allegedly been interfering with a congressional investigation by instructing various businesses to ignore information requests made by his committee.

The Handshake Heard ‘Round the World

My article from the Dec. 11, 2013 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

The Handshake Heard 'Round the World

By Matthew Vadum

President Obama’s distressing rejection of American exceptionalism was on display for the whole world to see yesterday when he shamed his country by lowering himself to shake the blood-stained hand of Cuba’s Communist dictator.

In a brief but cordial encounter in a funeral receiving line at the southern tip of the African continent, Obama shook the hand of Cuba’s octogenarian tyrant, President Raul Castro, granting a kind of legitimacy to the caudillo who leads America’s Cold War enemy 90 miles from the Florida coast. In so doing Obama demonstrated his weakness and emboldened America’s enemies.

The occasion was a memorial service in South Africa for that country’s former president, Nelson Mandela, a Communist terrorist who, like Obama’s close personal friend Bill Ayers, used explosives to express himself politically.

Mandela, who died last week at age 95 long after serving a quarter-century in prison and helping to slay apartheid, has a few things in common with Obama.

Mandela, who routinely denounced the United States and Israel, set in motion the transformation of his once-prosperous nation into the community organizer’s paradise that is modern South Africa, complete with mob rule, mob justice, racial tension, and epidemic levels of violence. Mandela’s Marxist colleagues are continuing his work, community organizing that nation into Third World kleptocracy status.

Obama conspicuously ordered American flags flown at half-staff throughout the U.S. in honor of Mandela, an unusual tribute for the United States to afford a non-American, and in this case, a former foreign head of state. It is all part of Obama’s racial presidency in which he plays off racial and ethnic groups against each other, no matter what lasting harm it does to society. The flag-lowering is better treatment than he gave the late British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, a far more consequential world leader whom he snubbed by skipping her funeral.

Food Stamps Fund Left-Wing Media

My article from the Dec. 5, 2013 issue of American Thinker:

Food Stamps Fund Left-Wing Media

By Matthew Vadum

The hippy-fueled magazine Mother Jones that helped torpedo Mitt Romney's campaign wants your tax dollars to fund its crusade for the radical transformation of American society.

Specifically, the extremist, George Soros-funded rag that published the story of Romney's ill-received "47 percent" comments is counseling its interns to apply for taxpayer-funded food stamps so they can survive their voluntary servitude in ultra-expensive San Francisco.  The locus of latte liberalism where the muckraking publication is headquartered has the highest rents in the nation.

In a feature story about how rotten left-of-center magazines are to their interns, left-winger Charles Davis reports at Vice:

One former MJ intern who spoke to me on the condition of anonymity told me they "slept on an air mattress for six months while I worked there because I couldn't afford a real one."  Another former intern said, "During our first meeting with HR at Mother Jones, we were advised to sign up for food stamps."
Of course they were.

This idea of using government money to fund political assaults on the American system and foment civil unrest has a long pedigree, as I wrote in my book, Subversion Inc.

More than four decades ago, when community organizer Wade Rathke landed a job at ACORN's parent nonprofit group, he discovered that the National Welfare Rights Organization had no intention of paying him for his work.  NWRO was one of many rabble-rousing leftist groups across the nation feeding at the public trough, receiving funding through the federal government's Office of Economic Opportunity.  The generously funded OEO was created to underwrite destructive left-wing "community" activism in the mid-1960s as part of the "War on Poverty."

Rathke, who was hired by NWRO to create what would become the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN), learned he would have to bum money off friends working in the federally funded anti-poverty effort.

This brutal exploitation of workers was typical of NWRO and, later, of Rathke's ACORN, which went so far as to go to court to seek exemption from California's minimum wage laws.  (ACORN lost.)  NWRO head George Wiley "would pay the telephone bill rather than the staff -- even though the employees complained that they couldn't pay their rent," according to Wiley's biographers, Nick and Mary Lynn Kotz.

Wiley expected his employees to "live off the land," like an invading army.  They were encouraged to pool resources, get free meals and accommodation, or get onto another organization's payroll while still working at NWRO.

Not surprisingly, in recent months Mother Jones has published several odes to food stamps.  One, "The Hidden Benefits of Food Stamps," makes the preposterous claim that food stamps improve the health of Americans and the U.S. economy.  The article cites the discredited Keynesian "multiplier" effect, arguing that every $5 in food stamps generates $9 in economic activity.  By this reasoning, America should be able to spend itself into prosperity if governments add a few more trillion dollars to their welfare programs.

Mother Jones is only doing what its Saul Alinsky-inspired idols in the Progressive movement have been doing for nearly a half century.

As Davis reports, many employees of the magazine belong to a union.  Editors Monika Bauerlein and Clara Jeffery each bring in more than $167,000 annually.

Mary Harris "Mother" Jones (died 1930) would probably not have looked kindly on the exploitation of young interns by the publication that bears her name.  The fiery, pistol-packing labor leader, whose grim visage is enshrined alongside that of Alinsky-trained organizer Cesar Chavez in the U.S. Department of Labor's "Labor Hall of Fame," campaigned against child labor, a fact Mother Jones even acknowledges on its own website.

Jones herself was a kind of proto-Alinsky who delighted in demonizing her adversaries and no doubt would have loudly approved of the idea of expending U.S. taxpayers' money to campaign for ever-expanding government.  The very notion of using food stamps to subsidize attempts to smash the eeevil capitalist system would have sent tingles of joy up the spines of Karl Marx and Vladimir Lenin. 

And if the proceeds from the crime-ridden welfare program, whose recipients routinely commit fraud by selling their food stamps for cash, end up covering poorly paid interns' booze binges and lap dances, well, that's just a bonus.

Matthew Vadum (website) is a conservative investigative journalist in Washington, D.C., as well as author of the ACORN/Obama exposé Subversion Inc.  

Labor Storms the Golden Arches

My article from the Dec. 6, 2013 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

Labor Storms the Golden Arches

By Matthew Vadum

Urged on by a failing left-wing president, labor unions are laying siege to America’s fast food restaurants in a desperate bid to stay relevant in the twenty-first century.

They say they want to double the national minimum wage, raising it to $15 an hour, in the misguided pursuit of improving the lot of low-wage employees. As the Washington Free Beacon notes, President Obama called for a $9 an hour national minimum wage in his State of the Union address earlier this year and Democratic lawmakers in the Senate responded by proposing to raise the rate to $10.10.

In embracing the anti-fast food campaign, Obama is engaging in the politics of distraction, misdirecting public attention, trying to change the national political conversation, moving it away from the stagnant economy, the failing Obamacare program, the political scandals that are becoming too numerous to count, and the other grave problems in American society that he has either exacerbated or caused outright.

The Saul Alinsky devotee who lied and cheated his way into the Oval Office is paying back the empurpled thugs of the Service Employees International Union whose crimson-clad members did so much to get him elected in 2008.

Arguments for doubling the minimum wage are utter nonsense, argues libertarian commentator Nick Gillespie: “Even economists who question whether hiking the minimum wage causes significant unemployment for low-skilled workers tend to agree that doubling wages will reduce jobs.”

These protests are about boosting the labor movement’s sagging fortunes and helping President Obama and have little to do with actually helping workers given that boosting the hourly rate will discourage hiring, especially the hiring of less skilled workers.

Far-left groups such as Fast Food Forward, Fight for 15, and the in-your-face ACORN-like Restaurant Opportunities Center, that are backed by MoveOn and big labor outfits like the Service Employees International Union and the United Food and Commercial Workers, are behind the effort endorsed by President Obama.

As usual, these professional socialist agitators have been using paid rent-a-mobs to conduct actions against restaurant chains such as McDonald’s, Burger King, Taco Bell, KFC, Pizza Hut, and Subway. A similar campaign was waged against Walmart stores across the country on Black Friday last week.

Obama’s Pointless Dog and Pony Show

My article from the Dec. 5, 2013 issue of FrontPage Magazine:

Obama’s Pointless Dog and Pony Show

By Matthew Vadum

As the flaws inherent in Obamacare become increasingly difficult for even the most news-averse Americans to ignore, President Obama is embarking on a probably futile crusade to sell the public on his signature legislative monstrosity.

Obama seems destined to get an even less enthusiastic reception from the public than George W. Bush received during the 43rd president’s ill-fated and largely forgotten 2005 crusade to reform Social Security.

Although Obama announced he is embarking on a three-week tour to convince Americans that socialized medicine is the answer to their collective prayers, Americans are recoiling at the brazen incompetence of the Obamacare exchange rollout. They seem to know almost instinctively that Obama’s statement foreshadows the looming disaster that we know as later-stage implementation of the Affordable Care Act.

That horrendous legislation is throwing millions of Americans out of the health care plans that Obama promised again and again they would be able to keep. Citizens have learned not to trust government with their health. The government made virtually no effort to ensure the security of data entered into and as a result a large proportion of insurance applicants are now at an elevated risk of having their identities stolen. The Obama administration claims the website is improving, but there is no way to know if it is telling the truth given its persistent lying about the condition of the health care program.

“The next three weeks are just a propaganda campaign and the American people are going to see right through it,” David Hogberg, Ph.D., senior health care analyst at the National Center for Public Policy Research said in an interview following Obama’s speech.