The Wire

  • Cagle named president of Alabama Coal Association

    Patrick Cagle has been named the new president of the Alabama Coal Association, succeeding George Barber, who has elected to retire after seven years of service to the coal group which was first formed in 1972.

    Cagle, who has worked with the association on legislative matters in the past, has more than 10 years of experience in navigating Alabama’s political landscape. As executive director of JobKeeper Alliance, a 501c(4) nonprofit whose mission is to protect and create quality jobs, he previously worked hand-in-hand with the coal industry to oppose onerous, job-killing regulations.

    Cagle and his wife, Molly, have a 15-month-old son, Bankston. They are active members at Church of the Highlands. Cagle is an avid outdoorsman and a member of the Conservation Advisory Board, which assists the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources with the formation of hunting and fishing regulations.

  • Don’t call $1K in tax cut savings ‘crumbs’ — U.S. Rep. Gary Palmer

    U.S. Rep. Gary Palmer (R-Hoover) delivered a speech on the House floor today about how tax reform has impacted Alabama’s Sixth Congressional District.

  • Fatal deer disease would impact more than hunters in Alabama — Montgomery Advertiser

    Chronic Wasting Disease is a neurological disease affecting deer; mule and whitetail deer, elk and moose, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. It is fatal to animals that contact the disease, there is no vaccine, the CDC says.

    And it’s getting closer to Alabama.

    “The economic impact, of course, is huge,” Sykes said. “Hunting is a major part of the economy in rural areas of Alabama. And hunting is a huge part of the culture in Alabama. It is a part of the fabric of so many people’s lives.”

    Land values will likely be the first indicator of bad news if CWD comes to the state, said Jeff Roberts, a real estate agent who sells hunting land in the Black Belt.

    “For farmers and landowners, leasing the hunting rights to their places is a huge secondary income for many,” he said. “If CWD comes to Alabama, the land values are going to go into the basement. I’ve had clients turn their backs on absolutely beautiful hunting tracts when they found out feral hogs were on the property. You can imagine what CWD would do to spook buyers.”

13 hours ago

It’s time to change the law on pocketing money for feeding inmates for the whole state, not just for Etowah County

On the state level, Alabama has a problem funding it’s prison system, it’s expensive, it’s crowded, and it is a mess. Locally, Alabama Sheriffs have to love the way the county jails are set up. Some have been pocketing the extra money for years, some lend that money to failing car dealers, and as we have learned recently, some buy beach houses with the money. State Rep. Mack Butler has had enough, but only for Etowah County, according to Yellowhammer News:

“The text of Butler’s amendment is based off one that Rep. Corey Harbison (R-Cullman) proposed in February specific to Cullman County. Harbison’s amendment directs excess allowances into a special account called the “Sheriff’s Discretionary Fund.” It also requires the sheriff to receive an annual salary equal to that of the county’s probate judge.”


Why this matters: This issue keeps bubbling up, it is a constant source of embarrassment. The argument has been made that this incentivizes sheriffs to be fiscally responsible, maybe that is true, but these funds should be used for public matters. There is absolutely no reason to not change the law across the state of Alabama to eliminate this incentive and move on from these problems, there is no reason to have different systems in Cullman and Etowah counties.

The details:

— Counties receives $4 per federal inmate, from the federal government, and $1.75 per inmate from the state.

— In 2007, Morgan County’s Sheriff Greg Bartlett was arrested for violating a consent decree and feeding inmates “woefully insufficient” meals.

— Also in Morgan County, Sheriff Ana Franklin was found to have spent $150,000 dollars of inmate food dollars, which she eventually repaid,  to invest in a used car dealership in 2015.

— Some counties, like Madison and Tuscaloosa, have their programs managed by the county commissions.

Dale Jackson hosts a daily radio show from 7-11 a.m. on NewsTalk 770 AM/92.5 FM WVNN and a weekly television show, “Guerrilla Politics,” on WAAY-TV, both in North Alabama. Follow him @TheDaleJackson.

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Cultural Marxists are using schools, courts to target Christianity

Listen to the 10 min audio

Read the transcript:


TOM LAMPRECHT: Fox News is reporting, Harry, a Christian student group has been welcomed back on campus at Wayne State University after threatening a lawsuit for being unfairly booted out. It was the InterVarsity Program, a program that had been at Wayne State University for 75 years. Now, nothing has really changed with InterVarsity so why did they get booted out? When they decided to recertify themselves as an official student organization, they wrote on the form as they had every other year before that InterVarsity is committed to welcoming all students but they would not necessarily have all students be a part of their group’s leadership selection.

DR. REEDER: Well, first of all, I’m grateful that they’re back on campus. And notice they got back on campus when they said they were going to go and challenge the ruling in court. Now, I think they were brought back on the campus, not because the administration changed its mind, but the administration knew they were going to lose in court.



Why would they be going to court? Tom, there is a movement called Cultural Marxism and it’s a very clear movement and I would encourage our listeners to do some research on it. Cultural Marxism is basically the fallback from the collapse of Communism.

Communism built a Marxist view of life based upon economics, but the economic foundations of socialism in general but communism in particular, basically collapsed. There’s still socialists that get a hearing in various situations, not the least of which is the previous candidate for presidency, Bernie Sanders. We’re fully aware that that’s there but, by and large, the success is being accomplished in cultural Marxism.

Now, what is cultural Marxism do? Well, cultural Marxism targets Christianity. There’s a reason why all of the Communist nations remove Christianity and killed Christians. That’s the one ideology that they cannot stand against.

By definition, Marxism is atheistic. The rationale and the truth and the power of the theistic foundations of Christianity cannot be denied and will always, ultimately, undo the irrationality of atheism so what they’ve done is they’ve gone after cultural Marxism, which is to create movements whereby Christians and Christian thinkers and Christian institutions are mocked, or shamed, or marginalized and, if at all possible, silenced and that’s why they go after them to silence them, particularly, in the halls of learning.

They certainly don’t want to debate the ideas because their ideas will always lose under the onslaught of Biblical Christianity’s rationality — suprarationality — and its accuracy in dealing with the reality of creation, redemption and the doctrine of providence and that is how God sustains His creation — ow did we get here, how can you be saved and how are we sustained?


And, therefore, there is a desire to remove them from the public square. Many times, it works because what you do is you bring it into the court system where you’re going to have allies in these judges and whereby you’ve got volunteers as lawyers or you’ve raise the money for these lawyers and then these Christian organizations, they don’t have lawyers, they don’t have the ability to raise the money to go to court so, many times, they just successfully legally ostracize them and legally alienate them while they culturally attempt to shame them.

InterVarsity decided, “Nope, we’re going to go to court.” As soon as that message came, then Wayne State backed out immediately because they knew what would happen if they went to court.

Why do I take the time to walk through that? Because there is a movement among Christians today which is, “Well, if they’re going to kick these organizations off campus, let’s just go off campus. Let’s go ahead and give it to them. Let’s be humble and let them shame us into silence or shame us into abdicating from our presence on the campus.

And, by the way, if you lose the case and if they force you off the campus, yeah, just go across the street, and open up a ministry and start reaching out to the campus — that’s fine — but I don’t think you should willingly walk over there in order to manifest some sense of humility. I think, in humility, we’re willing to go there. Humility will show in the manner of how we contest the issues, but I don’t think humility is don’t contest the issues.


Let me use the apostle Paul. There are arguably three times — at least two times — that the apostle Paul, when he was being silenced, appealed to his citizenship rights within Rome. Now, why did he do that? One case arguably saved his life, humanly speaking, the other case, arguably, was unnecessary because he was about to be pardoned, anyway. In fact, King Agrippa said, “Doesn’t he know if he hadn’t appealed to Rome, he would have been set free? But he’s appealed to Rome; let’s send him on.”

Well, I believe the apostle Paul did not make those appeals legally simply for the purpose of his own personal well-being to fulfill his ministry as apostle — I think he did it for other Christians to carve out their freedoms that were already there and affirmed them that they were, in fact, free to practice their religion under the present guidelines in Rome.

Therefore, I believe it is appropriate for us to say, “There is a Constitution, there is a Bill of Rights and that Bill of Rights was actually put there because of the anticipation of a day in which either the state would create a state-church to impose upon everyone or the state would create laws to try to stop the church and the Christian from the free exercise of religion.

Remember, the First Amendment says they are not to make laws whereby any national church is imposed upon the nation and they are not to make any laws that prohibit the free exercise of religion.

And, by the way, may I commend not only the Becket Foundation for their work in this, but also the Alliance for Defending Freedom — both of those organizations are doing an excellent job arguing for Christians to be in the public square, in the public institutions for the free exercise of religion.


And I do not believe it is inappropriate and I do not believe it is a bad witness for Christians to go to the court in order to affirm what their founding fathers, influenced by Christians, secured in the Bill of Rights because they knew a day like this would come in which the state would either try to impose a church to control its people or the state would attempt to outlaw Christianity because Christianity would be an ideology and a way of life that would confront statism, which is the notion that the state is sovereign over everything in life instead of a state that is under God. Not a state that is becoming God, not a state that assumes its position of deity over its citizens, but a state that assumes its responsibility under God to protect the freedoms that God has given to His people.

There are four times in the Declaration of Independence that God is referenced as the author and giver of unalienable rights and our freedoms. You have to be sensibly blind not to see the impact from God’s law that penetrate and permeate the law of our Constitution and the Bill of Rights. And all you have to do is to go to the end of the Constitution and, at the signatures, it says, “In the year of our Lord” — that’s what they acknowledged, that this Constitution was under the sovereign God who rules and reigns in all days and all months and all years and in the year that the constitution was written and signed.


TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, on tomorrow’s edition of Today in Perspective, I want to take you to an interview that Evangelical Focus did with British psychologist and Christian author, Glen Harrison. It deals with sexuality and it deals with the plight of pornography.

DR. REEDER: How do we get free from it if we are captivated by it and what does it do? Well, it certainly isn’t victimless by any means whatsoever. We’ll try to use appropriate language for the sake of our listeners.

(Image: Pixabay)

Dr. Harry L. Reeder III is the Senior Pastor of Briarwood Presbyterian Church in Birmingham.

This podcast was transcribed by Jessica Havin. Jessica is editorial assistant for Yellowhammer News. Jessica has transcribed some of the top podcasts in the country and her work has been featured in a New York Times Bestseller.

17 hours ago

The only solution to gun violence in schools is … more guns in schools

As I drove my five children to school this morning I heard on the radio that the bill allowing teachers to carry guns might be debated today on the floor of the Alabama House of Representatives.

I’ve had my share of serious concerns about the proposal — training, oversight, unintended consequences — and have remained mostly unsure how we should proceed.

Until a few minutes ago.


My youngest wanted me to walk him to class, and when his little hand passed from mine to his teacher’s — and I felt that familiar sense of worry that all good fathers feel when leaving their children — I imagined … just for a moment … that his teacher was wearing a holstered sidearm.

And I felt a genuine sense of relief.

It’s time for our lawmakers to turn that fantasy into reality so parents across Alabama can feel that same sense of relief, knowing that if some insane shooter tries to harm our children they’ll at least stand a fighting chance because some of their teachers will be armed.

The bill, sponsored by State Rep. Will Ainsworth (R-Guntersville), will need as much flexibility and local control as possible to avoid becoming a hinderance rather than a help, though. It already allows local school systems to determine if they want to arm their teachers, and that’s a good start. That way, if a community doesn’t like how their system decides, they can take it up with their locally-elected school board.

Still, lawmakers will likely need to make further adjustments next year once we’ve seen how the would-be law is implemented. There will surely be some tweaks tomorrow, but that should not be cause for complete inaction today.

Listen folks: In a sane world I’d rather see a pencil-packing teacher rather than a pistol-packing teacher, but we don’t live in a sane world.

The neo-Marxist left, with the help of libertarians and the acquiescence of lazy conservatives, has attacked and weakened our traditions and promoted filth and disorder everywhere, especially in our government-run schools. What we saw in Parkland, Florida, is a direct result of their campaign to reshape our society … and it’s certainly being reshaped.

There’s nothing left for those who seek to live in peace but to arm ourselves, and those who watch over our children.

I hate it, but that’s the reality we face.

And just as the only solution to hate speech is more speech, because we’re not getting rid of the First Amendment, the only solution to gun violence is more guns, because we’re not getting rid of the Second Amendment, either.

Whatever emerges from this legislative session, if it doesn’t end with more guns in schools — either by arming teachers, a volunteer security force, or more campus cops — then we have failed.

And the left would take our society another step down the road to ruin.

@jpepperbryars is the editor of Yellowhammer News and the author of American Warfighter.

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18 hours ago

Our problem is a widespread decline in moral values that has nothing to do with guns

One of the unavoidable tragedies of youth is the temptation to think that what is seen today has always been. Nowhere is this more noticeable than in our responses to the recent Parkland, Florida, massacre.

Part of the responses to those murders are calls to raise the age to purchase a gun and to have more thorough background checks — in a word, to make gun purchases more difficult.

That’s a vision that sees easy gun availability as the problem; thus, the solution is to reduce that availability.


The vision that sees “easy” availability as the problem ignores the fact of U.S. history that guns were far more available yesteryear. With truly easy gun availability, there was nowhere near the gun mayhem and murder that we see today. I’m tempted to ask those who believe that guns are today’s problem whether they think that guns were nicer yesteryear. What about the calls for bans on the AR-15 so-called assault rifle? It turns out that according to 2016 FBI statistics, rifles accounted for 368 of the 17,250 homicides in the U.S. that year. That means restrictions on the purchase of rifles would do little or nothing for the homicide rate. Leaders of the gun control movement know this. Their calls for more restrictive gun laws are part of a larger strategy to outlaw gun ownership.

Gun ownership is not our problem. Our problem is a widespread decline in moral values that has nothing to do with guns. That decline includes disrespect for those in authority, disrespect for oneself, little accountability for anti-social behavior and a scuttling of religious teachings that reinforced moral values. Let’s examine elements of this decline.

If any of our great-grandparents or even grandparents who passed away before 1960 were to return, they would not believe the kind of personal behavior all too common today. They wouldn’t believe that youngsters could get away with cursing and assaulting teachers. They wouldn’t believe that some school districts, such as Philadelphia’s, employ more than 400 school police officers. During my primary and secondary schooling, from 1942 to 1954, the only time one saw a policeman in school was during an assembly period where we had to listen to a boring lecture on safety. Our ancestors also wouldn’t believe that we’re now debating whether teachers should be armed.

There are other forms of behavior that would have been deemed grossly immoral yesteryear. There are companies such as National Debt Relief, CuraDebt and LendingTree, which advertise that they will help you to avoid paying all the money you owe. So after you and a seller agree to terms of a sale, if you fail to live up to your half of the bargain, there are companies that will assist you in ripping off the seller.

There are companies that counsel senior citizens on how to shelter their assets from nursing home care costs. For example, a surviving spouse may own a completely paid-for home that’s worth $500,000. The costs of nursing home care might run $50,000 a year. By selling her house, she could pay the nursing home costs, but her children wouldn’t inherit the house. There are firms that come in to shelter her assets so that she can bequeath her home to her heirs and leave taxpayers to foot the nursing home bill. In my book, that’s immoral, but it is so common that most of us give it no thought.

There is one moral failing that is devastating to the future of our nation. That failing, which has wide acceptance by the American people, is the idea that Congress has the authority to forcibly use one American to serve the purposes of another American. That is nothing less than legalized theft and accounts for roughly three-quarters of federal spending. For the Christians among us, we should consider that when God gave Moses the commandment “Thou shalt not steal,” he probably didn’t mean thou shalt not steal unless you get a majority vote in the U.S. Congress.

Walter E. Williams is a professor of economics at George Mason University.

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(Creators, copyright 2018)

1 day ago

Hillary Clinton’s ‘clarification’ is actually a doubling-down on yet another foolish statement

During the election, Hillary Clinton whined about “deplorables”, blaming the hate-filled monsters who would never vote for a woman for her surprising loss. In her mind, and the minds of her supporters, the only person we can’t blame for her loss is Hillary Clinton. Her most recent silly gaffe was last week, where she spoke in front of an adoring crowd in India and called out white women, whose votes were effectively split, for being tools of their bosses, husbands and (somehow) their sons.

The media will tell you she has had a change of heart, some are even calling it an “apology“:

“As much as I hate the possibility, and hate saying it, it’s not that crazy when you think about our ongoing struggle to reach gender balance — even within the same household. I did not realize how hard it would hit many who heard it,” Clinton wrote in a lengthy Facebook post.


Why this matters: That’s not an apology or a clarification, she clearly thinks she is right. She cannot accept the fact that she was the worst presidential candidate of all time. Her real problem goes much deeper, she has been surrounded by a group of sycophants in her political orbit and in the media. We shouldn’t be angry at Hillary Clinton, we should pity her.  At this point, we might as well just start rattling off the people Clinton hasn’t blamed for her loss to Donald Trump, but that list would only have one entry: “Hillary Clinton”.

The details:

— As much as Clinton tried to imply white women voted as a homogeneous block, white women were far more split in their presidential choice than any other sub-group.

— 52 percent of white women voted for Trump and 43 percent voted for Clinton, this is hardly a monolith that you can group as all in for one candidate.

— Even after the election and eight months into Donald Trump’s term, Clinton was still wildly unpopular.

— In fact, Clinton was still more unpopular than Trump, only 30 percent of respondents viewed her favorably.

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Dale Jackson hosts a daily radio show from 7-11 a.m. on NewsTalk 770 AM/92.5 FM WVNN and a weekly television show, “Guerrilla Politics,” on WAAY-TV, both in North Alabama. Follow him @TheDaleJackson.

No, Joy Behar, it’s not a ‘mental illness’ when the Lord speaks to us through his Word

Listen to the 10 min audio

Read the transcript:


TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, in the ABC News Department, they’ve got a program that, many may be surprised to know, it’s a part of their news department, “The View”. One of their panelists on this show, Joy Behar, recently made a comment concerning Mike Pence and his Christian faith. She said she understood how Christians prayed to God, but she went on to say, “When God starts talking to those people, don’t they call that mental illness?”

This bruhaha recently came to the ABC shareholders’ meeting in which Bob Iger, who is the president of ABC News, said he was happy to report that Joy Behar made a personal phone call to Mike Pence and apologized for her comments. However, while the White House is saying while he appreciates the apology, Joy Behar needs to apologize to the millions of Christians she insulted over the program.

DR. REEDER: Now are there some Christians that believe God is directly speaking to them with special revelation? Yes. Has God done that? Yes, that’s how we got the Bible — 40+ human authors through which God spoke. When they write, they don’t write, “Thus says Paul about God,” but they write, “Thus says the Lord,” so God has engaged in revelation, that is, He through divine inspiration, has given us His Word, praise the Lord.



But, now, most orthodox Christian theology believes that God has, quote, Book of Hebrews, “finally spoken in His Son.” this revelation has ceased, but God’s illumination continues, that God, through teachers, through your Bible reading, through your prayer life, through your reflection, through your meditation can “speak” to His people.

Now, what is meant there is not a direct revelation of God’s Word that goes beyond the Scripture, but an understanding of God’s Word to our heart to give us wisdom as to how we are to live.


To Ms. Behar, I would only mention to you the Book of James, for instance, tells me that, “If you lack wisdom, pray for it and God generously gives wisdom.” Now, how does He give wisdom? He gives wisdom by His Spirit, the same Spirit of God who gave the ability to bring forth the Word of God to the prophets in the Old Testament and the apostles in the New Testament. Now that same Spirit is within us and He who reveals God’s Word through the word now illuminates God’s Word when we go to God’s Word. In the preaching of the Word, God speaks to the hearts of his people.

Here’s what the Bible says, “Whoever should call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” How should they call upon Him in whom they have not believe? How should they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear them without a preacher?” Faith comes by hearing the Word, the Spirit-born Word of Christ.

Part of our theology is that God speaks to us from His Word by His Spirit. We speak to God in prayer. God’s wisdom, when we pray, can actually lead us to some good public theology in life and that what we need to do is to listen to the Lord through His Word and by His Spirit.

She has decided that that’s a mental illness; we have decided that’s wisdom. In fact, we believe that the beginning of wisdom is the fear of the Lord and, in the fear of the Lord, you seek the wisdom of the Lord. “God, would you speak to my heart from Your Word and by Your Spirit so I can have wisdom as to how to lead my life?”

I am so thankful that God has spoken to me in His Word. I was in South Florida and I did a series of talks there in a conference. Tom, I was sitting there listening to a talk from the Scriptures by Dr. Peter Lillback and it was amazing all of the insights that came, that God began to speak to my heart showing me my sin, showing me the way of obedience, showing me what needed to be removed, showing me what I needed to accomplish. God was speaking and showing it — that’s what we call Christian Doctrine of Illumination and that’s how God works in our heart.


Let’s go back to her broadside against Mike Pence. Well, it was tacky, it was ill-mannered, but I love the way Mike Pence said, “It didn’t offend me” — but he was right to say this — “I’m glad to receive your private apology.” He said, “What I think you really need to do, if you really believe in that apology, is that, by coming after me, there are millions of Christians who believe the same thing I do. I speak to God in prayer; God speaks to my heart through His Word in my prayer life and in the preaching of the Word and in my reading of the Word.”

Let me go to another issue here. This is a wonderful time for us to learn something about the Doctrine of Repentance. The Bible says that, when we are saved, we are saved by faith and repentance. Repentance is turning from sin to Christ and it’s making a 180-degree turn and, when there is true repentance, a couple of things happen.

One thing that happens is confession: we confess our sins. We actually say, “I did this. This is a sin. I confess it. I agree with God that this is sin so I confess it.” Then the Bible says that we do deeds appropriate to repentance. Now, this is not penance that we do to get right with God.

Tom, if I say something against you publicly, then I’m not only called to come to you and say to you, privately, “Tom, would you forgive me?” I’m also required to go to that same public arena and tell all those other people, “I was wrong.” That would be deed-appropriate to repentance. If I steal something, I want to pay it back. If I have broken someone’s relationship with someone else through my sin, I want to restore it. Restoration, reconciliation, restitution — those are deeds appropriate to repentance.


Therefore, Ms. Behar, it’s fine that you called Mike Pence, but I would remind you, you did not privately criticize him — you publicly criticized him. You don’t need to give him a private apology; you need to give him a public apology. That would be appropriate. Let your repentance match your sin.

And then, secondly, by attaching Mike Pence because of the Biblical doctrine of guidance — of how God guides His people when they’re making decisions in life — you attacked millions of Christians at the same time so, if you really think what you said was wrong when you called the Christian Doctrine of Divine Guidance mental illness, then you need to respond to all of them. You did it on a public venue, so you need to repent and ask for forgiveness in a public venue.

Why is it important to learn repentance? Let me give you two reasons and we’ll close with this, Tom. Reason No. 1 is you can’t be saved without repentance. The Bible says faith is believing in Jesus as Lord and Savior. Repentance is the Siamese twin of faith. If you have come to Christ for forgiveness of sins because He lived the life you couldn’t live and died the death for you that you couldn’t die in making atonement for your sins, if you come to Him by faith, then you need to turn from your sins and that’s what repentance is.

Repentance is 180-degrees — not turning from sin to do better, but you’re turning from sin to put your trust in Jesus. And, when you turn to put your trust in Jesus, you do the deeds appropriate to repentance. And, for all of those who are listening to us, Tom, let me tell you where you need to start is the same place that God, by His Grace, called you and me to start: turning from our sin and coming to Christ, Who is ready to forgive you and make it right. He has paid for those sins therefore, you’re forgiven and He will give you His Spirit and His Word and begin to speak to your heart so that you can walk away from sin and walk in the glorious truth that Christ is Lord and Savior.


Tom Lamprecht: Harry, on Tuesday’s edition of Today in Perspective, we recently covered the fact that, at Harvard, there was a Christian group that was removed from campus because of a leadership issue. A very similar situation happened at Wayne State University. However, this time, there is both bad news and good news.

DR.REEDER: Let’s take a look at what happened there and maybe some lessons that are inevitably going to have to be learned by Christian organizations in the public square, in general, and in schools, in particular.

(Image: The View/YouTube)

Dr. Harry L. Reeder III is the Senior Pastor of Briarwood Presbyterian Church in Birmingham.

This podcast was transcribed by Jessica Havin. Jessica is editorial assistant for Yellowhammer News. Jessica has transcribed some of the top podcasts in the country and her work has been featured in a New York Times Bestseller.

2 days ago

Is the GOP staring at another 1930?

After the victory of Donald Trump in 2016, the GOP held the Senate and House, two-thirds of the governorships, and 1,000 more state legislators than they had on the day Barack Obama took office.

“The Republican Party has not been this dominant in 90 years,” went the exultant claim.

A year later, Republicans lost the governorship of Virginia and almost lost the legislature.


Came then the loss of a U.S. Senate seat in ruby-red Alabama.

Tuesday, Democrats captured a House seat in a Pennsylvania district Trump carried by 20 points, and where Democrats had not even fielded a candidate in 2014 and 2016.

Republicans lately congratulating themselves on a dominance not seen since 1928, might revisit what happened to the Class of 1928.

In 1930, Republicans lost 52 House seats, portending the loss of both houses of Congress and the White House in 1932 to FDR who would go on to win four straight terms. For the GOP, the ’30s were the dreadful decade.

Is the GOP staring at another 1930?


Unlike 1930, though, the nation has not endured a Great Crash or gone through year one of a Great Depression where unemployment hit 10 percent in June, when the Smoot-Hawley tariff was passed.

Today, the economy is moving along smartly. The labor force is larger than it has ever been. Workers are re-entering and seeking jobs. Black and Hispanic unemployment are at record lows. Confidence is high. Our Great Recession is 10 years in the past.

The problem for Republicans may be found in a truism: When the economy is poor, the economy is the issue. When the economy is good, something else is the issue.

A good economy did not save the GOP in the 18th Congressional District of Pennsylvania, where the party’s tax cut was derided by Democrat Conor Lamb as a wealth transfer to the rich. Nor did Lamb hurt himself by implying Republicans were planning to pay for their tax cut by robbing Social Security and Medicare.

Republican candidate Rick Saccone reportedly stopped using the tax cut as his major issue in his TV ads that ran closest to Election Day.

Other factors point to a bad day for the GOP on Nov. 6.

Republican retirees from Congress far outnumber Democratic retirees.

Democratic turnout has been reaching record highs, while GOP turnout has been normal. And even in the special elections Democrats have lost, they are outperforming the Democrats who lost in 2016.

Relying upon hostility to Trump to bring out the resistance, savvy Democrats are taking on the political coloration of their districts and states, rather than of the national party of Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and Bernie Sanders.

There is, however, troubling news from Pennsylvania for Nancy Pelosi.

Lamb promised voters of “Deerhunter” country he would not support San Francisco Nancy for speaker. Look for Democrats in districts Trump carried to begin talking of the “need for new leaders.”

Trump seems fated to be the primary target of attack this fall, and not only in districts Clinton carried. For an average of national polls shows that disapproval of his presidency is 14 points higher than his approval rating. And this is when the economy is turning up good numbers not seen in this century.

At the national level, Democrats will turn 2018 into a referendum on the Trump persona and Trump presidency. For while the Trump base is loyal and solid, the anti-Trump base is equally so, and appreciably larger.

Lest we forget, Hillary Clinton, not the most charismatic candidate the Democrats have put up in decades, beat Trump by nearly 3 million votes. And while Trump pierced the famous “blue wall” — the 18 states that voted Democratic in every presidential election between 1992 and 2012 — the demographic trend that created the wall is still working.

White voters, who tend to vote Republican, continue to decline as a share of the population. Peoples of color, who vote 70 to 90 percent Democratic in presidential elections, are now nearly 40 percent of the nation.

Mass migration into America is re-enforcing that trend.

Moreover, millennials, who have many elections ahead of them, are more liberal than seniors, who have fewer elections ahead and are the GOP base.

But if Republicans face problems of demography, the party of “tax and tax, spend and spend, and elect and elect” appears to be reaching the end of its tether. Federal deficits are rising toward trillion-dollar levels.

The five largest items in the budget — Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, defense, interest on the debt — are rising inexorably. And there appears no disposition in either party to cut back on spending for education, college loans, food stamps, housing assistance or infrastructure.

If the Fed did not retain the power to control the money supply, then the fate of New Jersey and Illinois, and beyond, of Greece and Argentina, would become our national destiny.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

(Image: Gage Skidmore/Flickr & Wikicommons)

(Creators, copyright 2018)

3 days ago

David Limbaugh: Hillary’s hateful harangue

Hillary Clinton’s abhorrent remarks in Mumbai, India, last week warrant our attention because, like it or not, they represent the thinking of a large swath of the modern Democratic Party.

But my aim is not to highlight Clinton’s never-ending catalog of excuses for losing the presidential election, except to note that rather than blame everyone and everything but herself, she should apologize for stealing the nomination. If she hadn’t done that, she wouldn’t have to blame anyone.


She should also have to answer for FISA-gate, but I don’t want to waste space demonstrating Clinton’s unfitness for office — because I have little fear she’ll run again, and Democrats surely aren’t crazy enough to indulge her if she tries.

Instead, let’s review her disgraceful tirade in Mumbai, in which she blamed Americans’ racism and misogyny for her election loss.

“We do not do well with white men, and we don’t do well with married white women,” said Clinton. “And part of that is an identification with the Republican Party and a sort of ongoing pressure to vote the way that your husband, your boss, your son, whoever, believes you should.”

Hold the phone. Do you see the rich irony here? “Hear me roar” Hillary is impugning the independence and courage of women — the very people she is pretending to defend against our GOP misogyny? Seeing as she is maligning men, wouldn’t it be prudent not to insult the other half of the human race at the same time? I know few men who don’t have a higher opinion of women than this female liberal icon is displaying here.

You know darn well that Bill Clinton has a devil of a time persuading Hillary to do what she doesn’t want to do — unless it will advance her interests. So why would she assume that other women would be any less independent?

Sure, you can say she isn’t talking about all women — just white wives of Republican men — but what difference, at this point, does it make? There are way too many white GOP wives to pretend they are an exception to the norm. If GOP men are so evil, why did so many women marry them? Are they evil themselves, Mrs. Clinton? Or are they just gullible, malleable, soulless or weak? Choosing any of those options would reveal egregious disrespect for millions upon millions of women, which shatters Clinton’s argument to smithereens.

The India Today interviewer asked Clinton why 52 percent of white women voted for Trump despite the “Access Hollywood” tape showing him using vulgar language about women. I guess that even though the host is balding and graying, he is too young to realize how awkward this question was for the spouse of our former commander in heat, Bill Clinton. Then again, Hillary didn’t flinch before launching into her next set of progressive talking points.

“I won the places that represent two-thirds of America’s gross domestic product,” she said. “So I won the places that are optimistic, diverse, dynamic, moving forward. And his whole campaign, ‘Make America Great Again,’ was looking backwards.”

Not only is Clinton doubling down on her “deplorables” slander of Trump supporters. She is confirming the Obama-Clinton progressive view of America: Its best days are in the past. Settle in for economic malaise, because that’s the best you’re going to get. For if you want a government that isn’t hostile to business and entrepreneurship and that will reduce the tax and regulatory burden on America and unleash its engine of free market growth, you are “backwards.”

But the real kicker was Clinton’s summary of Trump’s supposed message to voters: “You know, you didn’t like black people getting rights. You didn’t like women, you know, getting jobs. You don’t want (to), you know, see that Indian-Americans (are) succeeding more than you are.”

You know, you know, you know? No, we don’t know. You ought to be ashamed, Mrs. Clinton, especially for lying when you apologized for calling us deplorables and said we are driven by “racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic” beliefs. You meant it then, and you mean it now.

But again, my beef isn’t with Clinton. It’s with the Democratic Party proper, which has long been cynically peddling this very message in direct and subtle ways to alienate minority voters from the Republican Party, whose policies are manifestly more conducive to their economic well-being. For starters, go back and look at the racially charged statements Obama sprinkled throughout his terms in office.

Sadly, this messaging works; I have seen too much evidence of it in my adult life to rationally deny it. The Democratic Party is running out of effective ideas, so it increasingly resorts to race baiting, gender shaming and other forms of intentionally divisive identity politics.

The racism smear is an evil cousin of racism itself because it falsely and negatively stereotypes groups of people and demeans their human decency and dignity. It does incalculable damage to the groups it vilifies and is corrosive to our society because it subverts racial harmony. And it certainly does minorities no favors to deceive them into suspecting that half the people in the country are somehow prejudiced against them.

But I have a feeling this shtick is losing its mojo. Under President Trump, the Republican Party is finally learning to fight back and defend itself against such slurs and showcase the superiority of its policies for all people, including minorities.

(Image: Fox News/YouTube)

David Limbaugh is a writer, author and attorney. 

(Creators, copyright 2018)

4 days ago

Protesting students need to look at their own public education systems for those to blame

Here is my homework assignment for all the fist-clenching, gun control-demanding teenagers walking out of classrooms this week (and next week and next month) to protest school shootings:

Ask not what the rest of the country can do for your local school’s safety; ask what your local school boards and superintendents have been failing to do for you.

Chances are, the adults closest to you — those most directly responsible for your security — have been shirking their primary duties, squandering scarce resources and deflecting blame.


Yes, it’s glamorous and exciting to appear on “The Ellen Show,” rub elbows with Eminem at the iHeartRadio Music Awards, pal around with Anderson Cooper, and soak up praise and donations from George Clooney and Oprah for shouting at the NRA, Republicans and President Trump.

Sure, it’s fun to ditch your homework, parade around in “March For Our Lives” swag, and watch your Twitter mentions explode like SpaceX launches every time you indignantly accuse gun-owning moms of hating their own children.

It’s lit like Bic to be the Democrats’ new junior lobbyists, fundraisers and voter registration captains.

But when the media whirlwind dies down and the Everytown buses ship you back home, mundane realities will set in.

Negligence, incompetence and inattention to the core mission of education and ensuring students’ safety don’t just spring out of nowhere. They are not alien invaders descending upon your neighborhoods from thousands of miles of away to impose chaos and misery upon your erstwhile Edenic existence.

Take Broward County, Florida. The current superintendent, Robert Runcie, was hired to clean up encrusted corruption in the district and school board that dates back to the early 1990s and resulted in three statewide grand jury investigations in 1997, 2002 and 2011. That last report blasted “malefeasance, misfeasance, and nonfeasance” on the Democrat-dominated school board and within top management at the district. In fact, the grand jury concluded after probing waste, fraud and favor-trading in capital construction projects:

“The culture of misfeasance and malfeasance at the school district is so deeply ingrained, so longstanding and so severe that we believe (employees who blow the whistle) will either be subsumed into the existing culture or drummed out of the District as soon as current attention is diverted from the Board and District.”

Indeed, one former building inspector who was fired in retaliation for warning about building code violations received a $45,000 settlement from the crooked school board. One board member was convicted on extortion, wire fraud and bribery charges involving school construction. Under Runcie, an $800 million renovation bond passed by voters in 2014 for school repairs on moldy, decaying buildings has been abjectly squandered; critics have alleged more bid-rigging, lax oversight and circumvention of graft reforms passed seven years ago.

The grand jury had issued a prophetic warning: “Bad habits and corrupt practices often return when the light of inquiry is turned off.”

Five years later, the district was entangled in yet another fiscal scandal after the state auditor general determined the schools had misallocated $23 million in federal Title 1 funds for low-income students; had “failed to correct safety violations at some schools;” and “paid health insurance premiums for former employees who were ineligible and in some cases dead,” according to the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel.

When public scrutiny is diverted to red herrings and politically expedient scapegoats, feckless educrats are all too happy to participate in accountability Kabuki theater. After the Parkland, Florida, shooting last month, Runcie immediately pounced: “If we really want to do something, spend money on adding more school resource officers and law enforcement.”

What bunk. Continued profligacy is no violence prevention strategy. If school leaders can’t exhibit basic fiscal discipline and stewardship, how can they be trusted to ensure classroom discipline and physical safety?

Is it any surprise that Runcie’s social justice pandering to dismantle the “school to jailhouse pipeline” won him Obama administration accolades — while endangering the lives of children used as political pawns?

The same set of corruptocrats who were in place while cronies rigged bids for personal gain stood by while book-cookers rigged crime statistics to appease racial bean counters.

There were no district-wide walkouts and nationwide protests when Broward County parents of special-needs students were laughed at during a school board meeting as they exposed how their children had been bullied, beaten and bitten by tormentors without consequences in 2016. Nor was there a massive uproar last fall when the district acknowledged a whopping 480 incidents of alleged sexual harassment and abuse in its schools.

As a famous Chicago community organizer once quipped, “Change is hard.” Selfies with gun control armbands is easy. Cleaning your own house, district and county is hard. Junkets to D.C. are easy. Digging through audits and public records is hard. Regurgitating Mad Libs-like talking points against the NRA and Second Amendment is easy.

Go back to class and look homeward, all you young “change agents.” The faultiest faults are near, not far.

(Image: ABC News/YouTube)

Michelle Malkin is host of “Michelle Malkin Investigates” on

(Creators, Copyright 2018)

4 days ago

VIDEO: Elizabeth Warren won’t take a DNA test because it’ll likely prove she’s lying about her Native American ancestry

On “Fox News Sunday,” Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who President Trump often refers to as “Pocahontas,” announced that she was not going to be running for president in the year 2020.

John Roberts, who was interviewing Warren, was quick to ask her many questions about controversial topics surrounding her name. One of those being her claim that she is of Cherokee ancestry.

During the interview, Roberts mentioned that a local Massachusetts newspaper, which had endorsed Warren’s previous senate run, insisted that she “take the spit test” to put the rumors to rest.


Time and time again, Warren has been accused of lying when it comes to her heritage. Not once has Warren offered insight to her true heritage. After all, her “heritage” landed her careers at both the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard. Why would she want to spoil that? From 2010-2011 at Harvard alone, Warren received a salary of $429,981.

Warren’s 2018 senatorial opponent, Dr. V.A. Shiva Ayyadurai (I-Mass.), mailed Warren a DNA test for her birthday, but later claimed it was ‘returned to sender.’

“I’m not running for president,” Warren said.

Warren then broke off topic and began discussing how her parents were both born in Oklahoma and how her father’s family vehemently disapproved of him dating Warren’s part Native American mother.

“I know who I am because of what my mother and father told me,” said Warren. “It’s part of who I am and no one’s ever going to take that away.”

It seems as though Warren, like many other politicians, is ill-equipped in admitting her wrongdoing. She is too far gone to understand the working class in America. She claimed minority status to earn more money, which is shameful.

Like many other Americans, I see Warren for the fraud that she is. She is not working for the American people and she is allowing the state of Massachusetts to crumble under her “leadership.”

The great state of Massachusetts must work to re-elect someone else. Someone who will work for them, someone who will work to make America great, and someone who won’t lie about their heritage only to advance themselves.

@RealKyleMorris is a Yellowhammer News contributor and host of The Conservative Savage radio program that airs noon-2 p.m. Saturdays on 101.1 WDYE in Birmingham and Huntsville.

5 days ago

State School Board member calls out State Representative Harry Shiver for his comments on female teachers

Every legislative session, some Alabama legislator is going to say something backwards and silly. This year, it may be State Representative Harry Shiver’s turn. Speaking at a committee hearing on a bill that would allow teachers to carry firearms in school Shiver said, “our ladies” need the legislature to protect them and that female teachers “are scared of guns”. One of Alabama’s elected females (yes we have these) wanted to let Rep. Shiver know that not all women needed his protection:


Why this matters: Hunter, who is also a State Senate candidate, is obviously needling Shiver who she considers a friend. She supports allowing teachers to carry in classrooms under the right circumstances.

Maybe Shiver’s heart is in the right place, and he believes that female teachers shouldn’t be forced to be around guns. But this argument is not an honest argument. No one is suggesting anybody be forced to carry a firearm to be a teacher. If passed, which it will not this year, this legislation allows teachers who want to carry to receive training to do so, thus giving them an opportunity to protect their students and themselves. Surely, there are women who would like to receive this opportunity.

The details:

— 22 percent of American women own at least one firearm.

More women than men (92 percent) say protection is “the only reason” they own a gun.

— While Americans oppose letting teachers carry firearms in schools, 68 percent of Republicans are in favor.

— When you ask parents, with kids in K-12 schools, 59 percent support incentives for teachers who will carry.

(Image: Mary Scott Hunter/Twitter)

Dale Jackson hosts a daily radio show from 7-11 a.m. on NewsTalk 770 AM/92.5 FM WVNN and a weekly television show, “Guerrilla Politics,” on WAAY-TV, both in North Alabama. Follow him @TheDaleJackson.

Despite what Washington Post writer says, Down Syndrome children are only undesirable to selfish, arrogant people

Listen to the 10 min audio

Read the transcript:


TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, just this past weekend, The Washington Post ran an editorial. It was written by abortion advocate, Ruth Marcus. She argues in this piece that women should have the right to abort a baby with Down Syndrome. “Those babies need to be eliminated because they are, through bad eugenics, undesirable humans from the gene pool. It’s for their own good,” she says.

Marcus is being heralded as brave and thought-provoking for her approach, which argues that both families and those with Down Syndrome would be better off if the condition was simply eradicated through selective termination.

DR. REEDER: Tom, this follows on some other programs that we’ve done where we’ve noticed that Denmark, and Iceland and other places are heralding the fact that they have eradicated Down Syndrome in their population. What they’re saying is, with the screening process in pregnancy, when they spot the possibly Down Syndrome child, now the social pressures and desires are, “Just go ahead and eradicate the child.” Just as this Ruth Marcus says, “The child is ‘undesirable.’” Undesirable because of its median cognitive ability.



I have to confess that I have asked the Lord continually in my life, “Please allow me to hate sin but never hate sinners; to go after the issues in public policy in a way that exalts what is right and good and beautiful and true, but to do so in as much of a loving way as possible.” At Briarwood, where I serve the Lord, I had the opportunities in the hallways in the lobby to speak to three Down Syndrome children.

One of them is a boy that comes up to me almost every Sunday and, yes, cognitively, there are some serious challenges, but when I talk to him about Jesus, he understands. It’s hard for me to tell you how loving this young boy is.

I’m just going to be blunt on this: they’re undesirable for only selfish, arrogant people. Is it a challenge? Yes. Would anyone choose to want the challenge? Not necessarily, but when it comes in the hands of a sovereign God, we find out that God is actually doing something in us greater than what He’s doing in that child.

I love to see the 26 high school kids who volunteer to be a buddy to one of them so these children can go to a Sunday School. And I watch what happens in those high school kids’ lives. I watch what happens in the lives of parents when they finally found out, “Oh, the church really does make room for us.” I watch what they do as they work through, “How am I going to take care of this child in their older age? How are we going to work out their situation and begin to solve those problems together as a family?”


I am fully aware of the challenges. I am also fully aware of the unbelievable blessings that I have seen occasioned by the presence of these children and literally brought by the way they live their lives in the sweetness, the insights and the beauty that they bring. And this notion that, “We need to eradicate them; they are undesirable,” probably those that don’t desire them are much more undesirable to me than these children are.

These children are desirable. They are not something that should be cast off due to the imperfections in a fallen world that has shown up in their physical makeup. And it’s amazing now what has been done so that these Down Syndrome children can function but, beyond that, these are children made in the image of God.

I pity the nation that has killed them out of their demographic population. In fact, I would find such a nation undesirable to live in.


TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, Ruth Marcus goes on to say that these individuals with Down Syndrome, they would be better off — let me put it bluntly — she’s saying they would be better off dead. And yet a 2011 study found that 99% of people with Down Syndrome over the age of 12 said they were happy with their lives, 99% said they loved their families, 97% said they liked their brothers and sisters, 86% felt they could make friends easily.

DR. REEDER: Tom, go and take those percentages where they’ve talked to these Down Syndrome children — 95%, 97%, 99% love my siblings, love my parents, love my family — now go ask those same questions to the “desirable” family.

I would say to you someone that loves their siblings, loves their parents, loves being in the family, well, I would suggest to you that person is desirable, maybe more desirable than the mentality and the hardness of heart of those who would be in a family and want to kill such children.

By the way, I will give her credit for being honest — she has said, “We need to kill them. For their own sake, we need to kill them because they are not desirable and they don’t have lives worth living.” Well, I would suggest to you they have enormously blessed lives and they are an enormous blessing in the lives of others, but that’s not why I argue it.


I argue it because here is exactly where we’ve come to in a secular society in which the sovereign self decides what is right and what is wrong instead of a society that is “under God” and a sovereign God gives us His ethical absolutes which is “You shall not murder,” which is “Every man and woman, boy and girl are made in the image of God.” And no matter what they are facing — spiritually, socially, psychologically, physically, medically — they are made in the image of God and their dignity is intrinsic because of that.

Their dignity is not assigned by an editorial writer who determines who is desirable and who is not desirable based upon the metrics that she has embraced in the arrogance of the sovereign self. Folks, that’s what you’re facing. That’s why we do Today in Perspective. Are we going to have a world and life view that you read through the lenses of sovereign God with ethical absolutes that are consistent with the character of God and are consistent with the law of God or are we going to have a society of secular humanism where the sovereign self will make the determination what is desirable and what is not desirable?

She’s actually as honest as Margaret Sanger, who wanted to eradicate the population of the unwanted minorities. “We don’t need them. We don’t want them. They’re not desirable. And, by the way, we really don’t think their life is worth living so let’s remove them.”

“Yes,” she said, “You may think me selfish; you may think me evil,” — yes, ma’am, I do believe what you’re saying is selfish; I do believe what you’re saying is evil. I will take the rationality of a Down Syndrome child the way that person treats other people as opposed to the way you treat other people. Watch them run up and hug you. Watch as you would have them destroyed in the womb.


TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, is it much of a leap: let’s get rid of people that we think are less desirable who perhaps don’t share the same convictions we have?

DR. REEDER: Before long, you’ve got the “choice” that you may eradicate the undesirable to the fascist mandate. For instance, China — China mandates the one-child policy. In China, guess what? Women are not as desirable, girls are not as desirable as boys.

Right now, Armenia, one study has said that we have lost 200 million more girls to abortion screening than boys that have been put to death because the boy was considered, in most of these cultures, more desirable. Now you’ve got cultures in which you’ve got all these guys but there’s nobody for them to married because the undesirable ones, the women, have been destroyed.

I’m sure that Ruth Marcus would not call women undesirable. You have exalted the sovereign self over life and you can take the life that you deem undesirable, then why can’t they do it?

But I would prefer a Biblical world and life view that says this: every life is desirable. These lives are made in the image of God. Now we need to bring the providential blessings of God into those lives and you will find out those lives will probably bring providential blessings to you.


Those Down Syndrome kids, I’ll tell you what they are — they are a gift from God. I have seen the blessing in the lives of families when these children that they would not have chosen to be born in terms of how they would have designed their child, but when God’s design showed up and the sovereign hand of God, I have seen the blessing that these Down Syndrome children bring.

Grace is greater than sin and the grace of God can overcome even the challenging effects of sin in a broken world.

(Image: Public Domain Pictures)

Dr. Harry L. Reeder III is the Senior Pastor of Briarwood Presbyterian Church in Birmingham.

This podcast was transcribed by Jessica Havin. Jessica is editorial assistant for Yellowhammer News. Jessica has transcribed some of the top podcasts in the country and her work has been featured in a New York Times Bestseller.

Believe it or not, here’s how American liberals and conservatives share a common foundation

Political discussion in the United States is often framed by party allegiance.

When people are asked to explain the rationale behind their choice to identify with a specific party, however, they often cannot give an answer beyond listing particular positions that they support or oppose.

While an understanding of specific policies is important, limiting debate to the realm of policy misses out on the deeper questions that lie at the heart of any political society.


Ultimately, politics is more than just a set of proposals; it reflects fundamental principles that derive from the values that an individual or society holds. In an increasingly polarized world, understanding the central principles of political philosophy is more important than ever, as they not only provide markers for navigating the policy sphere, but also enable fruitful debate between people regardless of their political viewpoint.

In the United States, the core principles that shape political debate stem from the philosophy of liberalism (also known today as classical liberalism).

Although the term “liberal” is now typically associated with the Democratic party, that has not always been the case. The current usage of terms such as “liberal” and “conservative” as indicators of party affiliation is a relatively recent phenomenon.

Liberalism is a political philosophy organized around the individual. In contrast to earlier conceptions of society, which were structured around heredity and social status, liberalism views the individual as the fundamental building block of society. Thus, the structures in a liberal political system are designed to promote individual liberty by limiting government, protecting private property, and promoting capitalism, an economic system that allows the free participation of individuals in the marketplace.

These ideas were central to the American Revolution and codified in the U.S. Constitution, particularly in the Bill of Rights.

While the merit of these principles seems obvious to Americans today, it was not necessarily the case at the time of the American Revolution and the years that followed. In fact, for the first half of the 1800s, liberalism was considered a radical ideology, one that spurred a series of revolutions across Europe and South America.

Initially, “conservatives” opposed these revolutions, as they challenged the more traditional understanding of society that was symbolized by the monarchy and aristocracy. Over time, however, the liberals gradually won out, and by the late-1800s, liberalism (along with capitalism) had become the primary political/economic system in the Western world. The spread of liberalism also coincided with the Industrial Revolution, generating tremendous increases in economic productivity.

It was not until the twentieth century that the terms liberal and conservative took on their modern connotations. By the 1900s, the distribution of wealth that had resulted from the Industrial Revolution was far from equal, with capital highly concentrated in the hands of a few while workers endured horrible working conditions for meager pay.

The Great Depression also caused many to doubt the stability of the free-market, as millions were put out of work and economic productivity ground to a halt. Some liberals began to question these developments, arguing that liberalism was failing to provide the freedom and prosperity that it had promised.

These liberals argued that the government, instead of allowing the market to operate freely, should work to regulate and reform the marketplace in order to secure greater liberty and equality for the working class, and became known as progressives.

These progressives were also referred to as “reform liberals,” because they advocated for a new understanding of liberalism. Those who opposed this shift were called “conservatives”, since they adhered to the free-market principles of “classical” liberalism. This shift (among others) would result in the political divisions that persist today, with progressives associating with the Democrats and conservatives with the Republicans.

Even such a cursory overview can shed some light on the current political climate. Despite the vitriol and disagreements that characterize political debate (on both sides), it is important to remember that modern liberals and conservatives ultimately share the same basic commitment to a democratic form of government that exists to serve the people, a notion that was key to America’s founding.

While the disagreements between liberals and conservatives are by no means insignificant, having a shared foundation makes conversation possible. Dialogue between diverse viewpoints is necessary for the functioning of a democratic republic.

Without a proper understanding of the underlying principles, politics can quickly devolve into a chaos of competing policies with no real connection to the values that are held by the society. Thus, it is crucial to understand political philosophy, not only to better grasp matters of policy, but also to foster a vibrant political community.

(Image: File)

Andrew Sasser, a native of Decatur, is a policy fellow at the Alabama Policy Institute.

6 days ago

A quick look at all of the races in Alabama this election cycle

Well, folks, the 2018 political year has begun and all of the horses are in the chute. It is going to be a good year for horse races.

Perennially, the year of the governor’s race has been the best year for Alabama politics. Historically, most Alabamians have been more interested in who they elect as governor than who is president.

However, we have really been more interested in who is sheriff than president. If the old adage that “All politics is local” applies in Tip O’Neil’s Massachusetts, it applies doubly in the Heart of Dixie.


Our forefathers, who wrote our now antiquated 1901 Constitution, must have perceived that our politics was localized because all of our races are on the ballot in gubernatorial years. This year we will not only elect a Governor, we will vote for a new Lt. Governor, new Attorney General, new Treasurer, new Agriculture Commissioner. Five seats on the State Supreme Court are on the ballot as well as three seats on the Court of Civil Appeals, and three places on the Court of Criminal Appeals.

Along with these State Court races, we have a good many of the Circuit Judges in the state running. All 68 Probate Judges are on the ballot. Lest some of you correct me that we only have 67 counties rather than 68, imperial Jefferson has two Probate Judges. That is not all folks, all 67 Sheriffs in the state are up for their four-year terms. Both political parties select their members to their local and state executive committees.  Part of the state school board runs this year.

Last, but certainly not least, all of our legislative seats are up for election. Our constitution anoints the Legislature with a good amount of power. Probably more than the Executive and Judicial branches of state government.

Our Constitution was written and dictated by powerful agricultural Black Belt farming and Birmingham industrial interests. They wanted the power vested in the Legislative Branch. They orchestrated malapportioned representative bodies, and gave inordinate power to the Black Belt region.

The Legislature controls the purse strings of the state. Thus, the adage that “those that have the gold set the rules.” The most powerful organization then and still now is the Alabama Farmers Federation (ALFA). They will disburse a token amount to the governor’s race, but they will concentrate their interest and resources on legislative races. Most of the other special interests and organizations will follow suit and do the same.

Therefore, you will see most of the special interest money focused on the 35 state senate seats and 105 House of Representative places up this year. Incumbents are usually hard to beat. Indeed, most of the most entrenched incumbent State Senators and Representatives are unopposed or have taken opposition.

There are 10 Senate Seats and 22 House seats where the incumbent is not running. These races will be interesting to watch and expensive and you will have one or two incumbents get benched. One that will probably go down is first term State Senator Larry Stutts in the Northwestern corner of the state.

Speaking of incumbents, very few sitting members of Congress ever lose.  No matter if they are Democratic or Republican. However, one of our seven congressional seats is seriously in play. Incumbent Republican Martha Roby will have her hands full holding on to her congressional seat for a fourth term. She has been considered very vulnerable since her race two-years ago. She is being challenged by four significant Republicans and two Democrats.

Bobby Bright, who held the seat for two-years as a Democrat, lost the seat to Roby in 2010 only because he insisted on running as a Democrat. He has seen the light and is running for his old seat as a Republican. He is a former mayor of Montgomery for 10-years along with his two years in Congress.  He is a stellar campaigner, who has roots in the Wiregrass.

Also in the race will be Rich Hobson, who will be the heir apparent to the Roy Moore organization. Enterprise/Coffee County State Representative Barry Moore will do well in his home Wiregrass area. Newcomer Tommy Amason will get some votes in the River Region. The race for the 2nd District should be interesting.

The other members of our Congressional delegation are Republicans Bradley Byrne, Mike Rogers, Robert Aderholt, Gary Palmer, and Mo Brooks, who all have free rides or token opposition.  Our only Democratic Congressperson is Terri Sewell, who has no opposition.

We will handicap the governor’s race next week.

@SteveFlowersAL is a syndicated political columnist in Alabama.

6 days ago

Everyone wants to “do something” about gun violence, but a voluntary “do not sell” list does NOTHING

After all the attention being directed towards school shootings, legislators are under pressure to “do something.”

State Senator Trip Pittman’s attempt is … something.

The Baldwin County Republican proposed, and passed out of the judiciary committee, a bill that would “allow an individual to restrict his or her firearm purchase ability by voluntarily adding his or her own name to the Voluntary Alabama Firearms Do Not Sell List.”

This bill is as absurd as it sounds:

“Under existing law, a person who fears that  he or she may become a risk to himself or herself or others is not allowed to restrict his or her own legal ability to purchase firearms. This bill would allow an individual to restrict his or her firearm purchase ability by voluntarily adding his or her own name to the Voluntary Alabama Firearms Do Not Sell List, thereby prohibiting the sale of firearms to that individual.”


Why this matters: The bill comes from a study done at the University of Alabama, where 46 percent of respondents said they would surrender their right to purchase a firearm. The actual effectiveness of this legislation seems to be almost none, as the person who surrenders their rights could get their rights back after a waiting period. To pretend their are large groups of mentally unstable people clamoring to run to the government and announce their conditions is laughable. This legislation may make people feel like they are doing something, but they are not.

The details:

— Pittman’s bill passed the judiciary committee five to three.

— There are currently zero states that have similar legislation to allow the surrendering of an individuals 2nd Amendment rights.

— Individuals can have their name removed from the list, but the bill requires a waiting period of up to 21 days.

— Anyone who sells a firearm to someone on the list could be fined up to $5,000, this applies to those who have Federal Firearm Licenses.

Dale Jackson hosts a daily radio show from 7-11 a.m. on NewsTalk 770 AM/92.5 FM WVNN and a weekly television show, “Guerrilla Politics,” on WAAY-TV, both in North Alabama. Follow him @TheDaleJackson.

Facebook’s ‘fact checker’ says the killing of unborn babies in abortion is a ‘disputed fact’

Listen to the 10 min audio

Read the transcript:


TOM LAMPRECHT:  Harry, I want to take you to a story out of the news site, Daily Caller. It deals with PolitiFact. Now, PolitiFact is the organization that Facebook has employed to help rid the world of fake news. The interesting thing is that PolitiFact has now come out and declared that the killing of unborn babies in abortion is a disputed fac

DR. REEDER: They said that it falls under “fake news.” Of course, what they’re dealing with in the context of the story, Tom, was a congressman in the state of Texas who, when he went to speak to the League of Women voters, just told them that he would do his best to defund Planned Parenthood and he would do his best to rid us of the genocidal destruction of the unborn babies in the womb.



They took that on and said his claim that abortion is the murder or the killing of babies is “disputed fact.” And the basis that they did that is that organizations like Planned Parenthood have said that it is “fetal eradication” or “fetal reduction.” “Well, if they call it fetus reduction or fetal eradication, then that must not be killing babies so we will declare it as a disputed fact as a fact-checking organization.”

They also appealed to Roe v. Wade, that Roe v. Wade had legalized abortion so, if it is legal to kill the “fetus” in the womb, then that can’t be called murder because murder would be criminality and Roe v. Wade has declared it not to be murder. And Roe v. Wade has declared it to be a fetus, not a baby.

Tom, that is the same irrationality that people in the 19th century after the Dred Scott decision said, “Well, notice that the Supreme Court decision that was written by Judge Taney, that declares a slave is not a full person. Therefore, they can be owned like chattel slavery.”


The Supreme Court can say all that they want to — the fact that they said it does not make it true. Africans that were brought to this country are made in the image of God. They are people. They’re not partially a person — they’re actually a person.

Roe v. Wade does not determine reality any more than the Dred Scott determined reality so we say to the Supreme Court that passed Roe v. Wade, “You are being scientifically, spiritually, philosophically and rationally inconsistent. These are not just simply a conglomeration or a mass of cells that may or may not turn into a baby.”

Tom, all you have to do is be with a mother when the child moves in the womb. The mother does not say, “Oh, I just had a contraction of a cellular mass.” No, the mother says, “Oh, my baby just moved.”

From the moment of conception, everything that that child is is there — it’s only going to grow in size, not in terms of essence. All of its DNA is there. It is a baby.



TOM LAMPRECHT:  Harry, it’s interesting you brought up Dred Scott because the gentleman that you referred to out of Texas, Jason Isaac, the thing that really got pro-abortion advocates upset was this statement that, “Every day, in America, we kill as many as 1,000 black children.”

DR. REEDER: Yes, Tom. And, by the way, this shouldn’t surprise us because who is the No. 1 provider and promoter of abortion? Planned Parenthood. Who founded Planned Parenthood? Margaret Sanger, a full-out supporter of eugenics who aimed at the eradication of the black race. And Planned Parenthood continued that legacy to this day. Planned Parenthood is mostly located in major cities and guess what? Major cities, over half of the African-American babies are aborted.

You go to New York, you go to Detroit, you go to Cleveland, you go to Los Angeles — in those cities, the number of abortions among African-Americans is greater than the number of delivery of babies. It is aimed as a genocidal instrument against the African-American race.

That is what’s absolutely astounding and that is what he took on, specifically — not only the one million plus that we abort in our nation every day, but the fact that it is aimed specifically at the African-American demographic in our population. They couldn’t deny that statistic so what they said was, “That’s not really killing African-American babies. Those are just fetuses — they’re not babies.”

What you’re doing is what we talked about yesterday, Tom, is that what you’re trying to do is minimize adultery as a sin by giving it a euphemism of an affair, so what we’re taking is an Anglicized Latin term, fetus, in order to refer to the baby in the womb in order to try to say it’s not a baby.

However, we know it’s a baby and, therefore, it is the destruction of the life of a baby. And, on the one hand, they want the freedom to kill these babies all the way up their birth in even what we call “partial-birth abortions — they want the freedom to do it, but they also want to hide under word games that they’re not really doing it: “fetal reduction,” “fetus eradication,” “We’ll call it a fetus instead of a baby.”

Listen, you know what it is — it’s a baby — and you know what you’re doing — you’re killing it. Why? Because it is an unwanted consequence of the sexual revolution. You’ve got to have it to get rid of the inconvenient and the unwanted.


And I will throw out my statement again: anyone who supports abortion, I would love to debate you publicly on the difference between this and “The Final Solution” policy of the unwanted and inconvenient in Nazi Germany. In fact, we can go to the activity of Stalin as he would get rid of the unwanted. Mao Zedong, Pol Pot — they all have this Fascist power to eradicate the unwanted and the inconvenient.

And, in our nation, we now have the government historically embracing the funding and approval of the unwanted and inconvenient in what actually ought to be the safest place in existence and that is in the womb.

And, therefore, I would love for someone to rationally explain to me the difference between that and the public policies of tyrannical nation. Here, our tyranny is not a dictator — our tyranny is the sexual revolution and the cultural elite who want to have sexual gratification at all costs, even at the cost of putting to death the consequences of sexual promiscuity and that is “unwanted children.”


Tom, let me just say one final thing. You may not want them, but we do — Christians do — we’ll adopt them. And, by the way, for those who say no to the lies of Planned Parenthood, we’ll help you. We have places, not only to take the children that we have and to help you through the process so that you do not become drawn into the notion that the eradication of the child will have no consequences in your life.

To those fathers and mothers who are facing this child that you “don’t want,” we would love to spend time with you about what does it mean to want them and, if you cannot raise them, then there are those there that would raise them.

These are children made in the image of God, precious in His sight is every little one. Jesus loves the children and said, “Blessed are they, for as such are the kingdom of Heaven. Let the children come to me.”



TOM LAMPRECHT:  Harry, on Thursday’s edition of Today in Perspective, I want to take you to a story out of The Daily Beast where a leftist rabbi named Jay Michaelson has disputed the idea that God’s design for gender involves accepting biological sex.

DR. REEDER: Yeah, in other words, he’s saying, “You may be born biologically a way, but that doesn’t mean you have to accept that as a gender identity in your life.” Let’s talk about that tomorrow, but what I really want to talk about is the horrendous affront to God and how he handles the Word of God to promote an irrational fabrication that separates gender from biological sex.

Dr. Harry L. Reeder III is the Senior Pastor of Briarwood Presbyterian Church in Birmingham.

This podcast was transcribed by Jessica Havin, editorial assistant for Yellowhammer News. Jessica has transcribed some of the top podcasts in the country and her work has been featured in a New York Times Bestseller.


6 days ago

Until Democrats come to grips with why Hillary lost, Trump will keep winning

Last weekend, Hillary Clinton spoke in India. There, she continued to struggle publicly with the most humiliating experience of her life, not her husband’s continual sexual misconduct or her State Department’s mishandling of Benghazi but her loss of the presidency to a reality television show host. Hillary’s not over it. And she never will be.

That much was obvious from her incredible, palpable anger at the American public. She first explained that Trump voters are stupid poor people: “what the map doesn’t show you is that I won the places that represent two-thirds of America’s gross domestic product. So I won the places that are optimistic, diverse, dynamic, moving forward.”


But Clinton wasn’t done. She then stated that Trump voters are ignoramuses who still stumble out to their outhouses in the middle of the night and stoop over a hole in the ground while reading old copies of Ku Klux Klan newsletters. Those people, she said, fell prey to Trump’s racist “Elmer Gantry” pitch: “you didn’t like black people getting rights. You don’t like women … getting jobs. You don’t want to … see that Indian-American succeeding more than you are. Whatever your problem is, I’m going to solve it.”

For good measure, Clinton tore into women who voted for Trump as well — and suggested that they are all little Tammy Wynettes standing by their men. “(W)e don’t do well with married white women,” Clinton explained. “And part of that is an identification with the Republican Party, and a sort of ongoing pressure to vote the way that your husband, your boss, your son, whoever believes you should.” Yes, women who voted Republican only did so because they are afraid that ol’ Bob is going to come home, get the beatin’ stick out of the closet and start a-whoopin’ and a-whalin’ on the little woman.

And then, Democrats wonder why they had trouble winning Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

Here’s the reality: None of this is true. The average Trump voter outearned the average Clinton voter, and 86 percent of Trump voters were employed, about the same percentage as Clinton voters. Tribalism in voting exists on both sides: The intersectional politics of the Democratic Party is inherently race based, and Trump successfully responded to that sort of politics in reactionary fashion. As to the notion that married women didn’t vote for Clinton because of their husbands, 52 percent of married women voted for Trump; 53 percent of married women voted Republican candidate Mitt Romney in 2012, and 51 percent voted for Republican candidate John McCain in 2008. Married women vote differently than single women not because of pressure from their menfolk but because they often have children, value family over career more than single women and are older than single women on average.

But here’s the point: Clinton represents a nasty, vengeful take on populations she has trouble winning over. That nastiness has filtered through the Democratic Party, which is firmly convinced that it’d be better off drilling down into population groups it thinks are interested in tearing down the system along with them than reaching out to populations it has lost. If Democrats continue with that quest, they’ll alienate the very voters who gave Trump victory in 2016.

(Image: MSNBC/YouTube)

Ben Shapiro is editor-in-chief of

(Creators, Copyright 2018)

6 days ago

7 Things: Alabama’s worst gun bill passes committee, McCabe may not make retirement date, not all kids walked out for gun control, and more …

1. The most absurd attempt to “do something” on guns is this bill proposed in the Alabama State Senate

— Senate Bill 376 passed out of the judiciary committee, it allows a person to add themselves to a “do not sell” list.

— No one is going to actually do this, this bill does absolutely nothing and is a massive insult to anyone looking for solutions.

2. Looks like Andrew McCabe could be fired before his retirement

— Attorney General Jeff Sessions is considering firing McCabe, who has been on a leave of absence since January and is set to officially retire this Sunday.

— According to the New York Times, McCabe expects to be fired by the end of the week after the IG office found that he was not forthcoming about question he let agents discuss the Clinton Foundation case with the press.


3. During the student walkout, not all students were supporting gun control measures

— A national student walk out took place, students at Birmingham’s Huffman High participated after a shooting there last week.

— Huntsville’s Grissom High School’s Andrew Stanton wrote for Yellowhammer News saying, “Some said it was simply to honor the victims. I’d have participated if that had been the case, but the group organizing the protest was capitalizing on the death of 17 innocent men and women to pass their political agenda”.

4. The public hearing on allowing teachers to carry brings out superintendents’ association to trash teachers

— Rep. Allen Treadway spoke about how he views the situation, “If we have a threat that enters a school, the best way to neutralize that threat is someone that’s there, that’s properly trained to stop it”.

— Eric Mackey, executive director of the School Superintendents of Alabama, told legislators that his teachers are killers waiting to happen, “We are afraid of some guns in the hands of some people in today’s society”.

5. After a tough loss in Pennsylvania, Republicans are worried and Democrats believe hating Trump is enough 

— A Republican strategist summed up the situation by saying, “No suburban district is safe and every candidate better be ready for the most difficult cycle of their career”.

— Democrats may be realizing that they do not need a candidate to pass a purity test, they just need to oppose the President, they just want to win.

6. Stocks slide as fears grow that China will target Boeing

— Boeing’s stock slide after reports Trump is considering targeting China with $60 billion dollars in tariffs and China is expected to retaliate against the aircraft manufacture.

— Boeing’s impact on Alabama is clear, they could have more than 3,000 jobs in the state by 2020.

7. Ambassador Nikki Haley calls out Russia for the poisoning on British soil, the State Department tweets about Crimea

— Haley comments are the strongest words against Russia from the Trump administration, she called for international action.

— Russia dismissed the accusations as “fairy tales” and denied they had anything to do with it.

7 days ago

Alabama shouldn’t go ‘fire, ready, aim’ before rejecting or accepting bills to arm teachers

Conservatives support limited government not because we dislike public services and institutions, but because we know government usually gets things wrong.

The higher the stakes, the messier the screw-ups, and that goes double when government reacts out of fear or anger, and especially for laws passed or rejected in haste.

Prudence. Doubt. Caution. Foresight. Wisdom — these are the qualities that should guide the conservative mind when facing a crisis. And these are the qualities that should guide Alabama’s leaders as they determine if, and how, we should arm our state’s teachers.

Rushing to say ‘yes’ to a bill because we’re worried about what could happen isn’t prudent, but rushing to say ‘no’ to a bill because we’re worried about what could happen isn’t prudent, either.


We have to move deliberately, methodically to get this right and sewn-up tight, because a good idea, if composed shoddily or implemented poorly, could be impractical at best or harmful at worst. And if we hesitate because a few influential individuals or powerful organizations don’t like the basic idea, then we’d have missed the opportunity to make a change for the better.

Right now, our lawmakers are considering two very ambitious bills:

State Rep. Will Ainsworth, R-Guntersville, introduced one that would allow teachers and school administrators to carry firearms once they completed a “basic school policing” training program approved by the Alabama Peace Officers’ Standards and Training Commission.

Another bill, offered by State Rep. Allen Farley, R-McCalla, would extend that permission to school staff and even volunteers once they were vetted and trained by local law enforcement. That bill is modeled after a law already on the books in rural Franklin County.

Both bills are promising.

Both bills would give the defenseless a fighting chance.

And both bills deserve to be thoroughly debated in both chambers of our State Legislature until something near a consensus — at least among conservatives — can be reached.

There was a public hearing on the issue this morning in Montgomery where lawmakers heard directly from concerned citizens.

That was a step forward.

Let’s hope our leaders listened, and … very carefully … take the next step.

@jpepperbryars is the editor of Yellowhammer News and the author of American Warfighter

7 days ago

Much of what Trump and his followers say is economically absurd

Maybe Donald Trump is such a powerful communicator and pot-stirrer that other countries, embarrassed by their own trade barriers, will eliminate them.

Then I will thank the president for the wonderful thing he did. Genuine free trade will be a recipe for wonderful economic growth.

But I fear the opposite: a trade war and stagnation — because much of what Trump and his followers say is economically absurd.


“(If) you don’t have steel, you don’t have a country!” announced the president.

Lots of things are essential to America — and international trade is the best way to make sure we have them. When a storm blocks roads in the Midwest, we get supplies from Canada, Mexico, even China. Why add roadblocks?

Steel is important, but “the choice isn’t between producing 100 percent of our steel (and having a country) or producing no steel (and presumably losing our country),” writes Veronique De Rugy of the Mercatus Center.

Today, most steel we use is made in America. Imports come from friendly places like Canada and Europe. Just 3 percent come from China.

Still, insists the president, “Nearly two-thirds of American raw steel companies have gone out of business!”

There’s been consolidation. But so what? For 30 years, American steel production has stayed about the same. Profits rose from $714 million in 2016 to $2.8 billion last year. And the industry added nearly 8,000 jobs.

Trump says, “Our factories were left to rot and to rust all over the place. Thriving communities turned into ghost towns. You guys know that, right?”

No. Few American communities became ghost towns. More boomed because of cheap imports.

It’s sad when a steelworker loses work, but for every steelworker, 40 Americans work in industries that use steel. They, and we, benefit from lower prices.

Trump touts the handful of companies benefiting from his tariffs: “Century Aluminum in Kentucky — Century is a great company — will be investing over $100 million.”

Great. But now we’ll get a feeding frenzy of businesses competing to catch Trump’s ear. Century Aluminum got his attention. Your company better pay lobbyists. Countries, too.

After speaking to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull of Australia, Trump tweeted: “We don’t have to impose steel or aluminum tariffs on our ally, the great nation of Australia!”

Economies thrive when there are clear rules that everyone understands. Now we’ve got “The Art of the Deal,” one company and country at a time.

I understand that Trump the developer liked to make special deals, but when presidents do that, it’s crony capitalism — crapitalism. You get the deal if you know the right people. That’s what kept most of Africa and South America poor.

But Trump thinks trade itself makes us poorer: “We lose … on trade. Every year $800 billion.”

Actually, last year’s trade deficit with China was $375 billion. But even if it were $800 billion, who cares? All a trade deficit shows is that a country sells us more than we sell them. We get the better of that deal. They get excess dollar bills, but we get stuff.

Real problems are imbalances like next year’s $1 trillion federal government budget deficit. That will bankrupt us. Trade deficits are trivial. You run one with your supermarket. Do you worry because you bought more from them than they buy from you? No. The free market sorts it out.

Trump makes commerce sound mysterious: “The action that I’m taking today follows a nine-month investigation by the Department of Commerce, Secretary Ross.”

But Wilber Ross is a hustler who phoned Forbes Magazine to lie about how much money he has. Now he goes on TV and claims, “3 cents worth of tin plate steel in this can. So if it goes up 25 percent, that’s a tiny fraction of one penny. Not a noticeable thing.”

Not to him maybe, but Americans buy 2 billion cans of soup.

Political figures like Ross — and Trump — shouldn’t decide what we’re allowed to buy. If they understood markets, they’d know enough to stay out of the way.

John Stossel is author of “No They Can’t! Why Government Fails — But Individuals Succeed.” For other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit

(Image: Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

(JFS Productions, Copyright 2018)

1 week ago

Trump’s Tariffs: Seen beneficiaries, unseen victims

There are a couple of important economic lessons that the American people should learn. I’m going to title one “the seen and unseen” and the other “narrow well-defined large benefits versus widely dispersed small costs.” These lessons are applicable to a wide range of government behavior, but let’s look at just two examples.

Last week, President Donald Trump enacted high tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum. Why in the world would the U.S. steel and aluminum industries press the president to levy heavy tariffs? The answer is simple. Reducing the amounts of steel and aluminum that hit our shores enables American producers to charge higher prices. Thus, U.S. steel and aluminum producers will earn higher profits, hire more workers and pay them higher wages. They are the visible beneficiaries of Trump’s tariffs.


But when the government creates a benefit for one American, it is a virtual guarantee that it will come at the expense of another American — an unseen victim. The victims of steel and aluminum tariffs are the companies that use steel and aluminum. Faced with higher input costs, they become less competitive on the world market. For example, companies such as John Deere may respond to higher steel prices by purchasing their parts in the international market rather than in the U.S. To become more competitive in the world market, some firms may move their production facilities to foreign countries that do not have tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum. Studies by both the Peterson Institute for International Economics and the Consuming Industries Trade Action Coalition show that steel-using industries — such as the U.S. auto industry, its suppliers and manufacturers of heavy construction equipment — were harmed by tariffs on steel enacted by George W. Bush.

Politicians love having seen beneficiaries and unseen victims. The reason is quite simple. In the cases of the steel and aluminum industries, company executives will know whom to give political campaign contributions. Workers in those industries will know for whom to cast their votes. The people in the steel- and aluminum-using industries may not know whom to blame for declining profits, lack of competitiveness and job loss. There’s no better scenario for politicians. It’s heads politicians win and tails somebody else loses.

Then there’s the phenomenon of narrow well-defined large benefits versus widely dispersed small costs. A good example can be found in the sugar industry. Sugar producers lobby Congress to place restrictions on the importation of foreign sugar through tariffs and quotas. Those import restrictions force Americans to pay up to three times the world price for sugar. A report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office estimated that Americans pay an extra $2 billion a year because of sugar tariffs and quotas. Plus, taxpayers will be forced to pay more than $2 billion over the next 10 years to buy and store excess sugar produced because of higher prices. Another way to look at the cost side is that tens of millions of American families are forced to pay a little bit more, maybe $20, for the sugar we use every year.

You might wonder how this consumer rip-off sustains itself. After all, the people in the sugar industry are only a tiny percentage of the U.S. population. Here’s how it works. It pays for workers and owners in the sugar industry to come up with millions of dollars to lobby congressmen to impose tariffs and quotas on foreign sugar. It means higher profits and higher wages. Also, it’s easy to organize the relatively small number of people in the sugar industry. The costs are borne by tens of millions of Americans forced to pay more for the sugar they use. Even if the people knew what the politicians are doing, it wouldn’t be worth the cost of trying to unseat a legislator whose vote cost them $20 a year. Politicians know that they won’t bear a cost from sugar consumers. But they would pay a political cost from the sugar industry if they didn’t vote for tariffs. So they put it to consumers — but what else is new?

(Image: President Donald J. Trump signs the Section 232 Proclamations on Steel and Aluminum Imports. White House/Flickr)

Walter E. Williams is a professor of economics at George Mason University.


1 week ago

No, Congressman Mo Brooks is not trailing unknown challenger Clayton Hinchman by 10 points

Donald Trump has truly weaponized the phrases “fake news” and “rigged polls”. His ardent supporters love to imply anything that is not a quasi-love note to him is an outright attack on his presidency. The “fake news” part is kinda silly, but there is some truth to it. The “rigged polls” argument is on far more shaky ground. But, if you wanted to look at how polls can get “rigged” look no further than this poll in Alabama’s 5th Congressional District and how the questions are phrased:

“If you had a choice between vote for Mo Brooks, a 36-year politician and incumbent or Clayton Hinchman, a combat veteran who lost his leg in Iraq hunting down Al-Qaeda and now is a successful businessman, who would you be more likely to vote for Clayton Hinchman a war hero and successful businessman or Mo Brooks, a career politician who is part of the swamp President Trump wants to clean out?”

Why this matters: Wow. Do you support the disabled veteran or the guy who is opposing Trump, which is an absurd argument given Brooks’ voting record? Not surprisingly, given that choice Hinchman out-polls Brooks 36.6 to 26.6 percent. But this is hardly a realistic look at where the district stands, it’s a poll designed to get a result and get media attention for said results, which is a victory for Hinchman’s campaign staff. On the other hand, in a poll commissioned by Congressman Brooks’s campaign, Brooks leads 70 to 13 points.


The Details:

According to 538, Congressman Mo Brooks votes with President Trump 85.7 percent of the time.

— In 2016, Mo Brooks received 66.8 percent of the vote while Trump received 64 percent of the vote.

Money matters in all races, as of January 1st, Brooks had $565,023 dollars on hand, compared with Hinchman’s $16,398.

— Brooks came in 3rd during the 2017 U.S. special election primary, losing to Sen. Luther Strange and eventual failed candidate Roy Moore.

(Image: Clayton Hinchman for Congress/Facebook & CSPAN/YouTube)

Dale Jackson hosts a daily radio show from 7-11 a.m. on NewsTalk 770 AM/92.5 FM WVNN and a weekly television show, “Guerrilla Politics,” on WAAY-TV, both in North Alabama. Follow him @TheDaleJackson.

Morality should shape cultural ethics, not the other way around

Listen to the 10 min audio

Read the transcript:



TOM LAMPRECHT: New story, Harry, Fox News, the Florida House passed a school safety bill this past Wednesday that includes new restrictions on rifle sales and a program to arm some teachers, sending the measure to the governor for his signature. Governor Rick Scott, at the time this bill passed, declined to say whether he would sign the legislation.   

DR. REEDER: It’s interesting to watch us grapple with the reality of evil in this world and, yet, we have a secular life world and life view that is being adopted by our nation, in general — our culture, in particular. And in that secular world and life view, you leave no room for the role of the spiritual, for the role of the moral climate. You ultimately lose ethics except for what the culture approves.


When you have a God-centered world and life view, then you work off a proper understanding of God’s revelation as to what is right and what is wrong. In other words, the Creator has given us creation laws and revealed laws and those laws then become our ethical absolutes and the most obvious is the Ten Commandments: “You shall not murder; you shall not commit adultery; you shall not bear false witness; you shall not steal.” Those become ethical absolutes in which you attempt to moralize a culture — that is, the morality of the culture is the reflection of the ethical absolutes.

Let me again put it this way: ethics is the behavioral study of “ought-ness.” Morality is the behavioral study of “is-ness.” Morality is what is the culture believing and doing. How is it framing itself in terms of its values? Ethics is a statement of how the culture ought to frame itself and it doesn’t say to the culture, “What are you doing?” It says to the culture, “This is what you ought to be doing.”

You can’t have ethics without apodictic law — that is, transcendent law, revealed law — that speaks from the Creator to the creation, “This is what you ought to do. This is ought-ness.” What happens when you move from a culture that says, “We’re under God. God’s laws are to frame our morality and our virtues” — what happens when you move from that sacred view of culture informed by ethical absolutes to a secular view of culture which says, “There is no God to speak to us. Oh, you can privately believe in a God in your home or your house or in your heart, but it doesn’t speak to public policy”?


Well, what happens then is you look at the morality of a nation, you then make your ethical statements from morality. In other words, you look at what people are doing and then you start talking about what they ought to do in light of what they are doing. And so, you look from morality to develop ethics instead of ethics to develop morality.

Let me give you a prime example: the Word of God says you shall not commit adultery so, in all of the framing institutions of society we used to teach our children and our young people, we would teach them that you ought to save sex for marriage. That’s what you ought to do. And then we attempted to speak to the culture, knowing that not everyone would do that, but yet you try to develop the virtue of the culture from “Do not commit adultery.” Now, we move from sacred sex in the context of marriage as defined by God to the morality of “safe sex.”


Well, the same thing happens in terms of evil like this: evil breaks out and people murder and then, when that happens, we automatically ask, “Why did this happen?” and we then create a new morality which is, “Oh, the guy used a gun so we’ll outlaw guns and that will keep these things from happening.”

Let me be abundantly clear. Do I believe there needs to be regulations on instruments of death? Absolutely, and I think there ought to be age limits, I think there ought to be background checks. Will that solve this problem? Answer: no. If people want to bring catastrophes of violence and death, they can find instruments, whether it’s Timothy McVeigh using fertilizer or whether it’s somebody who uses an automobile or whether it’s someone who uses a gun.

Our culture needs to understand you need to go at the heart of the matter and the heart of the matter is the matter of the heart. That’s where our issue is.

Why is our culture producing such, particularly, young men who are in such despair over their identity that they can take, perhaps, what they’ve done in the privacy of a game room with a video and bring it into reality, eradicating nameless people by violent acts on their computer now to eradicating nameless people in a school in order to express their angst and seek their identity in their moment of fame?

What is it in our culture that would draw out such acts that would have been unthinkable? What is it that is eradicating the restraints on evil in the culture?


TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, let me take you to the other side of that coin because, while you have the Nicholas Cruzes of the world that we look and say, “Where have our morals gone?” at the same time, you have a couple of individuals coming out of this horrific story that truly were heroes. Aaron Feis, the football coach who literally laid down his life to protect students. A young 15-year-old, Peter Wang, who lost his life; he was a member of the high school’s ROTC program. He was last seen wearing his gray uniform with black stripes as he helped open a door so other people could escape.

DR. REEDER: There were others, as well, and that is so inspiring and so encouraging to see such heroism that was displayed: selflessness, sacrificial acts of valor and courage on behalf of other people. Here’s someone who is taking people’s lives and here are people who laid down their life in order for others to live.


Of course, we’re immediately reminded of the virtue of the Word of God that is promoted, “Greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” And, in some of these cases, these people laid down their lives, perhaps, for people that weren’t necessarily their friends — they didn’t even know them, but they knew these people were made in the image of God and, therefore, their life was sacred and they were willing to will down their lives that others might live.

When we bring in the transcendent majesty of God into a culture, that then lifts people’s eyes up and even restrains those who would engage in such horrific acts. But, when you take a culture and you just teach people, “You are an accidental mutation of germs. There’s nothing meaningful about you. You have no divine purpose of existence that God made you in His image and for His glory,” then you find the despair that begins to work into a culture and the culture in a death spiral of a death culture.

Yet, at the same time, praise the Lord for such stories as the one that you gave. My goodness, that young man in his ROTC uniform, you can almost see him standing bravely at the door, holding it open with the gunfire coming so that others could escape and then his life is lost while others saved. And then this football coach who literally, we are told, flung his body in front of the bullets as kids were trying to escape and, thereby, saving their life.

Jesus, He laid down His life to save those who were at enmity against them. Just think: when I needed Him and did not want Him but was in rebellion against Him, this Jesus Who did not need me, wanted me and laid down His life for me so that I can be saved by the forgiveness of sins when He went to the cross. That coach gave a glorious of what Christ did on the cosmic scale of saving all of His people from all of their sins.

And, when you come to Him, now you’ve got a reason to live — not a reason to kill people, but a reason to live. Then life begins to pervade a culture instead of death.


TOM LAMPRECHT: Harry, on tomorrow’s edition of Today in Perspective, I want to go to Nashville, Tennessee where Nashville mayor, Megan Barry, recently resigned. She admitted to having an affair sometime back with her head of security, but she didn’t resign until finances came into the picture.

DR. REEDER: In other words, “Follow the Money” became the reality of whether corruption was going to be addressed in the governing offices of the city of Nashville and what was the sin of corruption that could remove you and what wasn’t a sin of corruption that would not remove you? It’s interesting. Let’s take a look at that story tomorrow.

(Image: Pixabay)

Dr. Harry L. Reeder III is the Senior Pastor of Briarwood Presbyterian Church in Birmingham.

This podcast was transcribed by Jessica Havin, editorial assistant for Yellowhammer News. Jessica has transcribed some of the top podcasts in the country and her work has been featured in a New York Times Bestseller.

1 week ago

Alabama’s Republican Party should pass a resolution celebrating, not censuring, Sen. Shelby

When my wife and I began editing Yellowhammer News four months ago, we promised to always “tell the truth, even when it hurts, and especially when it’s unpopular.”

We wrote that because we believe honesty is a virtue to be constantly pursued, not only in journalism, but also in every profession and aspect of life. And when found, it should be celebrated, not censured, as an alarming 42 percent of the attendees at the recent statewide meeting of the Alabama Republican Party wanted to do.

The group pushed a resolution denouncing Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Tuscaloosa, for saying he couldn’t support the candidacy of someone who many fair-minded Alabamians believed was credibly accused of having been a serial sexual harasser of young women.

Thankfully, 58 percent of our party’s members at the meeting voted to “indefinitely postpone” consideration of the measure.

But why so much residual anger at someone for simply being honest?

When Shelby was asked about the race shortly before the election, the senator said he “couldn’t vote for Roy Moore” and instead would write-in the name of a “distinguished Republican” on the ballot.

Shelby, like many others (some who only spoke in hushed anonymity or avoided comment altogether), believed in his heart that Moore would have done more harm to Alabama than good. So instead of sheepishly avoiding the question, he answered truthfully and therefore, in doing so with full knowledge of the coming backlash, acted courageously.

Isn’t that what we seek from our elected representatives?

But because Shelby spoke honestly, supporters of the recent failed resolution blame him for Moore’s defeat.

Having a single senator tell the truth wasn’t what sunk Moore’s candidacy. The judge lacked a coherent communication strategy and failed to seriously campaign for the job.

That’s it. Period.

Three quick yet telling examples:

— During the final crucial days of the campaign when Moore should have been busy getting seen by voters in the most populated areas, he chose to only appear at rural churches and a couple of out-of-the-way rallies. (As a contrast, Donald Trump held five rallies a day in key battleground areas in the run up to his victory. That’s how it’s done.)

— Instead of deploying campaign spokesmen to overwhelm local talk radio and television speaking to actual Alabama voters, they were wasted with interviews on national television with the likes of Anderson Cooper and Jake Tapper. Why? Their viewers in New York City weren’t voting in our election.

— Yellowhammer News even offered the judge’s campaign as much room on our website as they’d like to make their case, out of fairness since I wrote some pieces critical of Moore. Did they take advantage of that opportunity? No.

Had the judge aggressively campaigned in those final weeks – getting out and talking with voters, speaking directly to them, bypassing the media – he’d have easily made up the 22,000 votes he lost by.

But … if some wish to ignore those hard lessons and give Shelby credit for stopping a runaway train from crashing into the Senate and taking Alabama’s interests down with it, then fine.

For my part, I thank Shelby for having courage and telling “the truth, even when it hurts, and especially when it’s unpopular.”

Shelby swatted away this controversy like an annoying fly. His years of service and leadership have given him the power and influence to do so with ease.

Meanwhile, those of us coming up in our state’s conservative movement should take heart, and take a lesson, from Shelby’s stance.

And keep on telling the truth.

(Image: Senator Richard Shelby/Facebook)

@jpepperbryars is the editor of Yellowhammer News and the author of American Warfighter