What is the Tunnel Wall?

.........................A timely collection of conservative articles about liberal influences on politics and culture in America ......................

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Compare and contrast: A tale of two government shutdowns

Monica Showalter  "Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has been spotted quietly picking up trash at the National Mall and helping busloads of schoolchildren tour and understand the World War II monument in its vicinity, all in the wake of Friday's government shutdown led by Democrats in Congress.
"He's doing so without pay and as other employees are placed on furlough. The Daily Caller has the scoop:
“We’re not putting up barricades,” Zinke told The Daily Caller in an interview. “Absolutely not. We’re passing out brochures until we run out of brochures. I’ll be out here everyday.”
"That's an admirable response of a dedicated public servant and among Republicans, he's not the only one. Several Republicans in Congress, (along with one Democrat), are insisting on going without paychecks until this government shutdown, which deprives military troops in the field of pay, is resolved.
"How different this government shutdown is compared to the 2013 shutdown during the Obama years, when Obama officials, who were then in power, rammed it right into the public's face to make sure voters bore the brunt of the pain. They wanted the public to suffer. They shut national parks, placed barriers on the World War II monument, (the same one Zinke is leading tours on), refusing to allow old veterans who traveled a continent their chance to see the monument that their great heroism merited. 
"They did other disgusting things, such as forcibly (and at high cost) shut down private businesses on national park land, effectively expropriating their earnings, once again to drive the point home that the shutdown was bad and Republicans were to blame. They politicized the shutdown, too, keeping hot towels for themselves at their gym while fining joggers who ran through national parks. The Mall of course was shut down - except for an illegal alien rally. As I wrote here when I was an editorial writer at Investor's Business Daily:
This is not the first time the federal government has shut down because of conflict between a president and a Congress. But it is the first time its armed agents have been told from on high to make things as painful as possible for ordinary people, while their rulers and their pet causes are exempted.
"They held the public hostage in a bid to get them to blame the Republicans and advance their own political ends, lolling in their comforts.
"Republicans, by contrast, are now working together to alleviate the inconvenience to the public and minimize the pain to the most vulnerable. Democrats sought to step up the pain, commissar-style. Republicans are now seeking to soften it.
"As midterm elections approach, it calls attention to who really is fit to rule in the U.S. legislature. We see the shutdowns side by side and can legitimately ask, who really cares about the public?"

The Obama Administration’s ‘Brazen Plot To Exonerate Hillary Clinton’ Starting To Leak Out, According To Former Fed Prosecutor

"A former federal prosecutor says the truth is starting to seep out about the Obama Administration’s “brazen plot to exonerate Hillary Clinton” and “frame an incoming president with a false Russian conspiracy,” according to an exclusive interview with The Daily Caller News Foundation.

"Joe diGenova, a former federal prosecutor, connects the dots on former Obama administration Justice Department and FBI officials who may have “violated the law, perhaps committed crimes” to politicize law enforcement and surveillance against political opponents.

" 'He says former FBI Director James Comey conducted a fake criminal investigation of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as they “followed none of the regular rules, gave her every break in the book, immunized all kinds of people, allowed the destruction of evidence, with no grand jury, no subpoenas, no search warrants. That’s not an investigation. That’s a Potemkin village. It’s a farce.” 

"DiGenova condemned the FBI for working so closely with the controversial Fusion GPS, a political hit squad paid by the DNC and Clinton campaign to create and spread the discredited Steele dossier about President Donald Trump. Without a justifiable law enforcement or national security reason, he says, the FBI “created false facts so that they could get surveillance warrants. Those are all crimes.” He adds, using official FISA-702 “queries” and surveillance was done “to create a false case against a candidate, and then a president.' ” . . .

Chuck Schumer In 2013: If Dems Shut Down The Government Over Immigration That Would Be ‘A Politics Of Idiocy’

Hot Air

"This quote so perfectly sums up Democratic hypocrisy on the shutdown that when I first heard it being quoted by House Speaker Paul Ryan I wondered if it was real. But as you’ll see in a moment, it is real. Back in 2013, Sen. Chuck Schumer was giving an interview to Jake Tapper about the government shutdown which lasted for 16 days in October of that year. Tapper asked whether Democrats in the Senate had taken too hard a line with Republicans.
“ 'It was not a hard line on the substantive issues,” Schumer replied. He continued, “It was a hard line saying, unless I get my way I’m going to shut the government down, I’m going to risk default for the nation. Now anyone can do that." . . .

American Silliness: Jan 21, 2018

California City Leaders Wasted $10 Million Buying ‘Green’ Police Cars They Don’t Use. Democrats

Mallard Fillmore

Pelosi to Appear on ‘Drag Race’ Reality Show as Guest Judge "House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) is set to appear as a guest judge on the VH1 drag queen reality show "RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars."
"Pelosi is a long-time fan of  the reality show competition, which is hosted and produced by drag queen RuPaul Andre Charles, the Washington Post reported.  
"Pelosi’s district includes San Francisco, which has been a long time "safe place" for members of the LGBT community. " . . .
Founder Of A Silicon Valley Startup Called Middle America “A S- -t-Hole With Stupid People” . tweeted:

Women’s March: Are We Watching A Movement Or Just Group Therapy For Trump Haters? . . . However, the Tea Party movement didn’t stop at the rallies. They quickly rolled up their sleeves and got to work, putting aside their differences with their own party and often volunteering at local GOP headquarters, signing up for campaigns, knocking on doors and mobilizing “Get Out the Vote” efforts.
"Unlike the Women’s March, the Tea Party movement’s swift action yielded instantaneous results that were impressive; record-breaking, in fact." . . .

Business Owner? Get Out of California NOW!  "If you’re a business owner you are doomed in California. The state is going to fail because of the lunatic leadership, and you are going to be who they rob in order to try and save their sinking ship."
"Get out NOW!"

Cory Booker completely loses it at DHS secretary Kirstjen Nielsen

Or made an energetic performance for the liberal press.

. . . "The senator then proclaimed that "tens of millions" of Americans are "hurting" over the word.  Booker said he himself experienced "tears of rage" when Durbin called him to report the president's alleged vulgarity.
"Booker's feigned emotional breakdown over a word he has heard many times as mayor of Newark was laughable.
"Booker then rolled out the "white supremacy" charge, with examples of white criminals and their crimes, as if Nielsen, by the fact of her skin color, had committed them.
"The senator's fake outrage and predictable race-baiting do not lessen the seriousness of threatening and harassing a female Cabinet member.
"Booker's lunatic bellowing requires a mental health examination."

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Obama Mocked Trump’s Political Ambitions. Trump Spent His First Year Dismantling Obama’s Legacy

Obama Mocked Trump’s Political Ambitions. Trump Spent His First Year Dismantling Obama’s Legacy  "As president, Barack Obama repeatedly mocked Donald Trump’s political ambitions, laughing at the idea of Trump ever winning the presidency.

"Obama mocked Trump in 2011 for calling into question whether he was born in America. The state of Hawaii later released Obama’s longform birth certificate to put the matter to rest. Obama viciously mocked Trump for the controversy, before mocking the idea of Trump ever serving in the White House.
. . .

"A year into the Trump presidency, Obama’s legacy is taking a beating.

"Trump has overseen the dismantling of several of Obamacare’s most controversial aspects. The tax cuts package Trump signed last month included a provision repealing Obamacare’s individual mandate. Trump also rolled back the Obama administration’s contraception mandate, which forced religious groups like the Little Sisters of the Poor to provide birth control for all employees, regardless of conscientious objections.

"Trump’s Department of Education rolled back several measures that conservatives had decried as federal overreach. The Trump administration repealed the Obama-era mandate that required all public schools to implement transgender bathroom policies and speech codes. The Trump administration also revoked a legally dubious Title IX guidance that regulated sexual assault proceedings on college campuses.

"In July, Trump announced the United States would be pulling out of the Paris Climate Accords, which Trump blasted as a threat to American sovereignty. Trump’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rolled back the Obama administration’s Clean Water Rule, which drastically increased federal regulations of streams, and repealed the Obama-era Clean Power Plan, which increased environmental regulations on coal-fired plants. Trump approved both the Keystone XL and Dakota pipelines that Obama had rejected.

"Last month, Trump’s Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rolled back the Obama-era Net Neutrality policy that increased federal regulation of the Internet.

"Trump’s foreign policy has made for a similar contrast with Obama’s. (RELATED: Five Ways Trump’s New National Security Strategy Is A Rejection Of Obama’s)

No Barrycades! Sec. Zinke Will Spend The Government Shutdown Ensuring The WWII Memorial, National Parks, Stay Open

"No Barrycades this time. Just one more demonstration of how Obama had no problem hurting people for his political agenda."

The government might be shut down Saturday morning, but that did not stop Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke from doing his job.
Early in the morning, Zinke could be found cleaning up trash on the National Mall and welcoming tours of schoolchildren to the World War II memorial with a smile.
“We’re not putting up barricades,” Zinke told The Daily Caller in an interview. “Absolutely not. We’re passing out brochures until we run out of brochures. I’ll be out here everyday.”[…]
n the first hours of the government shutdown Secretary Zinke was making plans for how to keep America’s public parks open. In the early hours of Saturday morning, Zinke met with public affairs and maintenance staff to run through a plan to keep memorials on the National Mall open. He then spoke with garbagemen who will be picking up trash on the Mall one last time before the city of D.C. takes over for them.
Zinke then got into his car and drove to the WWII memorial to greet visitors and hand out maps and helped with directions. “I spent the morning walking around, giving brochures out,” Zinke said. “I got a lot of thanks from both sides of the aisle. We will not weaponize our public lands.”
“The visitor experience will be diminished,” Zinke admitted, noting that some museums and public service will take a hit during the shutdown. “But to the degree possible, we will keep our public lands open. They should not be used as a political weapon.”
Zinke said public parks, monuments and the battlefields “belong to the people and not the government,” and noted that people will see a “significant difference” between the Trump administration and Obama’s in the way public lands are managed during a shutdown.
From 2013: Obama barricades Lincoln Memorial unlike during 1995 “shutdown”  "Morgen Richmond, of the former Verum Serum blog, has been doing great research on the closure of parks and monuments in Washington, D.C. by Obama and the Democrats, revealing rank hypocrisy and mean-spiritedness.
"For example, The White House now claims that it needed to erect barricades at the WWII Memorial to keep out vistors, including a group of visiting WWII veterans, because parks service personnel know how to perform CPR.  (Seriously, that’s the claim.) " . . .
. . . The Barry-cades should be the symbol of this “shutdown” — political opportunism by Obama and the Democrats in Congress who create unnecessary photo-ops, even if it means ambushing visiting WWII veterans and ordinary citizens in order to protect special Obamacare privileges enjoyed by members of Congress.  . . .
Called by some a "veangeful narcissist".   "A top-secret memo that has been released to members of Congress, but still is being withheld from the American public, characterizes Barack Obama as “the vengeful narcissist” and alleges surveillance abuses by his administration" . . .

The Trump shutdown compared with the Obama shutdown

Here’s what happens now that the federal government shut down
Post officeThe US Postal Service is an independent agency of the federal government. Post offices will not be affected. Mail will continue to be delivered.
Social SecurityChecks will still be in the mail. But new applications will not be processed until the shutdown ends.
National parksUnlike the last shutdown, some plan to remain open. Those with safety or staffing issues will close.
Museums and monumentsYou will have to cancel that visit to the Statue of Liberty, Lincoln Memorial and other well-known sites. The Smithsonian and the National Zoo plan to stay open for the weekend, but shut starting Monday.
TravelAirports will stay open. During the last shutdown, more than 14,000 air traffic controllers were ordered to keep working without pay. In a worst-case scenario, delays might be encountered depending on which employees are deemed “non-essential.”
PassportsIf you need one, hurry up. Passport services will end within a short time depending on when funding runs out.
Immigration servicesMost employees of the Department of Homeland Security are considered essential and will remain on the job. Immigration services are mostly self-funded, so those offices will continue operating.

The vanishing Obama presidency

Virginia - Pilot  "ONE YEAR AGO, Barack Obama’s presidency came to an end. His election as the nation’s first black president was a major accomplishment for him and for the nation. Time will never erase that achievement.

"But as time passes, this may be just about his only lasting political accomplishment; his legislative, regulatory and policy initiatives are disappearing rapidly. On domestic policy:" . . 

Now, to name just a few: 
. . . 
• Iran nuclear deal: The president has declined to certify the Iran nuclear agreement, which the Obama administration negotiated, setting the stage for withdrawal or modification.
• Syria: The president has used military force to enforce Obama’s “red line” against Syria’s use of chemical weapons.
• Ukraine: U.S. policy toward Ukraine is changing; the U.S. will now send lethal weapons to assist Ukraine in resisting Russian aggression.
• Cuba: Obama’s opening to Cuba has been put on hold.• Israel: The United States and Israel have restored their historically close relationship.• Egypt: The flirtation with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt has been replaced by U.S. support for Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi.
"Overall, with the exception of a shrinking Obamacare and the CFPB, no significant initiative of the Obama administration remains in place. The near doubling of the federal debt during his eight-year presidency — from $10 trillion to $19 trillion — seems like a very high price to pay for such ephemeral results.
"The Obama presidency is vanishing before our eyes. In only 12 short months, the legacy of Obama’s presidency is best captured by the motto of a well-known disaster restoration company: “like it never even happened.' ”

From October, 2015: Obama's Spite Fences.

The Tunnel Wall   "First remember: Park Rangers Ordered to ‘Make Life Difficult’ During Shutdown Those would be the National Park Service of Obama's Rangers and never forget that.
“It’s a cheap way to deal with the situation,” an angry Park Service ranger in Washington says of the harassment. “We’ve been told to make life as difficult for people as we can. It’s disgusting.”
"Blame whomever you will for this issue, but know that it was Obama who ordered these sites blocked!

"Police Remove Vietnam War Veterans at Memorial Wall   "After one group of veterans went around the barricade, "the park ranger told them the wall was closed," NBC's Mark Seagraves reported. "Later another group of vets showed up and moved the barricades. At that point, the memorial filled with vets and tourists. That's when police came and moved everyone out."
"It takes more manpower and costs the government more money to close down an outdoor wall than to let people walk past it and pay their respects.
The Obama administration has been very selective in devoting resources to shutting down memorials." This vindictive president and his administration.

"Iwo Jima Memorial Closed, Barricades Erected (Update: Vets Break Through) 

. . . 

Making Life Difficult   "The Democrats are claiming the Republicans are holding the nations "hostage." But is seems the mean- spirited hostility to the public is coming from the Obama administration."

Unclear and Present Danger? Obama’s Actions over WWII Memorial Tips His Handful of Sad Jokers   “ 'Public lands” DO NOT belong to the Federal Government, they belong to “the public.” As such, the Federal Government has NO authority to keep “the people” from access to land which belongs to “the people.” The government can only stop the upkeep and maintenance of the property. It CANNOT block public access to public lands, at least “constitutionally.' ”

DEVELOPING… National Park Service Blocks Roads To Keep Drivers From Viewing Mount Rushmore

View image on Twitter
Diana West @diana_west_ 
UNBELIEVABLE: NPS blocks lane to prevent viewers from stopping on the side of the road to view Mt Rushmore!
The National Park Service is run by Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar who sits at the table with Barack Obama during cabinet meetings. Here is where the President can give him instructions on what to do with American's access to national parks and memorials, including telling him not to spend money on blocking visitor access. Or, being Obama, this is likely where he told Salazar to make things as difficult for Americans as possible.
Somehow I picture laughter around the cabinet table as Salazar told Obama he even put cones in the road so people cannot even stop to look at Mt. Rushmore. 
"Attaboy, Ken! I can't wait to blame this on the Republicans!"
How vindictive of this petulant, spiteful, juvenile president.
The Tunnel Dweller

California Democrats want businesses to give half their tax-cut savings to state

SFGate  "California lawmakers are targeting the expected windfall that companies in the state would see under the federal tax overhaul with a bill that would require businesses to turn over half to the state.

"A proposed Assembly Constitutional Amendment by Assemblymen Kevin McCarty, D-Sacramento, and Phil Ting, D-San Francisco, would create a tax surcharge on California companies making more than $1 million so that half of their federal tax cut would instead go to programs that benefit low-income and middle-class families.

“ 'Trump’s tax reform plan was nothing more than a middle-class tax increase,” Ting said in a statement. “It is unconscionable to force working families to pay the price for tax breaks and loopholes benefiting corporations and wealthy individuals. This bill will help blunt the impact of the federal tax plan on everyday Californians by protecting funding for education, affordable health care, and other core priorities.”al from two-thirds of the Legislature to pass, a difficult hurdle now that Democrats have lost their supermajority. If passed and signed by Gov. Jerry Brown, it would then go to voters for final approval.
. . . 
"Democrats lost their supermajority following resignations of two Assembly Democrats, Matt Dababneh of Encino (Los Angeles County), and Raul Bocanegra of San Fernando Valley (Los Angeles County) amid sexual misconduct allegations. Another Assembly Democrat, Sebastian Ridley-Thomas of Los Angeles, resigned citing health issues. In the Senate, Democrat Tony Mendoza of Artesia (Los Angeles County) is taking a leave of absence pending an investigation into sexual misconduct allegations." . . .

See the source image

House-passed bill to avoid a government shutdown sinks in the Senate as funding deadline passes

See the source image

CNBC  "The measure failed in a procedural vote by a 50 to 49 margin. Five Democrats — Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Joe Donnelly of Indiana, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, Doug Jones of Alabama and Claire McCaskill of Missouri — had backed it. Four Republicans — Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Jeff Flake of Arizona, Rand Paul of Kentucky and Mike Lee of Utah — opposed it. So did Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for procedural reasons."
. . . 
"As funding looked set to lapse at midnight, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders released a scathing statement blaming Democrats for the shutdown.
" 'We will not negotiate the status of unlawful immigrants while Democrats hold our lawful citizens hostage over their reckless demands. This is the behavior of obstructionist losers, not legislators. When Democrats start paying our armed forces and first responders we will reopen negotiations on immigration reform," she said." . . .
. . . "House Speaker Paul Ryan used the line of attack after the House passed the bill on Thursday night.
" 'Senator Schumer, do not shut down the federal government," the Wisconsin Republican said at a news conference.
"The Democrats facing the most political peril in the vote are those who face re-election this year in states Trump won, including McCaskill, Heitkamp, Manchin and Donnelly.
"If a shutdown occurs, McConnell intends to keep the Senate in session over the weekend and force those Democrats to face a series of difficult votes, according to Politico and NBC News."

Finally: Justice for Rand Paul in assault case

Thomas Lifson   "Senator Rand Paul will receive some degree of justice for the enduringly painful six broken ribs and other injuries he suffered from an unprovoked attack by his neighbor, Rene Boucher, in Bowling Green, Kentucky.  Outrageously, local authorities had charged Boucher with only a misdemeanor, third-degree assault, to which he had pleaded not guilty.  Federal prosecutors stepped into the unjust breach by announcing yesterday:
... that Rene A. Boucher, 58, Bowling Green, Kentucky, has been charged with assaulting a member of [C]ongress resulting in personal injury, a felony under federal law.
"Assaulting a member of Congress is an offense we take very seriously," said [US Attorney Josh J.] Minkler. "Those who choose to commit such an act will be held accountable."
 . . .
"As AT readers well know, there has been an alarming rise in violent language directed at Republicans, encouraging the less stable among progressive haters to physically attack conservatives.  Rep. Steve Scalise suffered near fatal injuries, and but for heroic Capitol Police guards, there might have been a mass assassination of House Republicans gathered for a baseball game.  I am not certain that 21 months in federal prison (note that paroles are rare and do not come early in sentences in the federal correctional system) is adequate punishment to discourage other progressive haters from acting out their political passions violently.
"Federal prosecutors must have come up with evidence that Boucher's attack was politically motivated, which justifies charging him.  I am sorry only that it will not be exposed at trial."

Democrats shut government down, but they're still struggling to explain why

The Hill

Democrats shut government down, but they're still struggling to explain why
© Greg Nash
"While they may not be able to admit it publicly (or even to themselves), it’s clear that the Democrats have deliberately manufactured a government shutdown. Banking on a complicit media and a confused electorate, they have now fully embraced a political tactic they decried for eight years under President Obama.
"Charges that this shutdown is the fault of Republicans, or that Democrats haven’t been part of the negotiations leading to the spending bill they rejected, are not true. Instead what’s obvious is that Democrats methodically engineered a situation where the government could shut down over the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
"Here are the steps they employed to get us here." . . .
Almost every Republican senator is ready to support a short-term spending bill. It is only the Democrat senators that are blocking its passage. If Republicans really did “control” the Senate, as Democrats are saying, the government would have remained open.
. . . 
. . . " A quick review of the facts reveals exactly why. Democrats, exerting the leverage they have over what can pass the Senate, will block any compromise. While feigning interest in a compromise, they continue to block any proposal that doesn’t give them exactly what they want and only what they want.
"In short order, we’ll all find out whether the American people are clued in to this brand of brinksmanship."
Thomas Binion is the director of Congressional and Executive Branch Relations at The Heritage Foundation.ull article here.

"Now that the government is shut down, a whole 17% of it, the liberal media are in a panic.  Over at Mother Jones they compiled a list of some of the things we are missing out on.  Here's a partial list:" . . .

. . . "Paraphrasing Dirty Harry, Democrats have gone ahead and made my day with their shutdown theater.  And unwittingly, they have handed President Trump the opportunity to inform Americans of how many bureaucrats turn out to be less than "essential" to the many people outside the Beltway who find themselves unaffected by the "crisis."  This can only help him further downsize the federal bureaucracy."