Former New York Mayor Bloomberg to spend $50 million in anti-gun drive

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The initiative’s political target is the powerful pro-gun lobby, including the National Rifle Association, that spends millions of dollars each year to back gun-rights supporters.

Bloomberg’s group, called Everytown for Gun Safety, will focus on state and local lawmakers, “corporate boards, and state and federal elections – fields of play formerly occupied almost solely by the gun lobby,” according to a statement.

“This is the beginning of a major new campaign to reduce the gun violence that plagues communities across the country,” Bloomberg said in a statement. “There is no question that more needs to be done to tackle this deadly problem.”

The billionaire Bloomberg told NBC’s “Today” show he did not view the $ 50 million investment as a “heavy political lift.”

“Thirty-one thousand Americans either get murdered or commit suicide with illegal guns. That’s the heavy lift,” he said.

The initiative will focus on expanding background checks for gun buyers at state and national levels, rather than on sweeping federal weapons bans.

Gun control advocates have long called for a better system of background checks. After 12 people were killed in September at the Washington Navy Yard, President Barack Obama said the United States needed a better way to check whether gun buyers have mental health problems.

The NRA, the largest U.S. lobby group for gun rights, spent $ 20 million in the 2012 election cycle, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, which tracks campaign data.

The NRA did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Bloomberg has been particularly outspoken about tightening existing gun laws since a gunman killed 20 children and six adults at a Newtown, Connecticut, elementary school in 2012.

The three-term New York City mayor also advocated for measures to curb obesity, smoking and even salt content in food.

He told The New York Times he was proud of the work, which some critics said interfered with personal choice.

“I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close,” he told the newspaper.

Bloomberg will serve as chairman of the new gun control network, which will target 15 states and has a goal of signing up 1 million new supporters, in addition to the 1.5 million already in the two gun control groups Bloomberg funds, Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.

The NRA says it has nearly 5 million members.

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BREAKING: New Emails Show Lerner Contacted DOJ About Prosecuting Tax Exempt Groups

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According to new IRS emails obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request from Judicial Watch, former head of tax exempt groups at the IRS Lois Lerner contacted the Department of Justice in May 2013 about whether tax exempt groups could be criminally prosecuted for “lying” about political activity.

“I got a call today from Richard Pilger Director Elections Crimes Branch at DOJ … He wanted to know who at IRS the DOJ folk s [sic] could talk to about Sen. Whitehouse idea at the hearing that DOJ could piece together false statement cases about applicants who “lied” on their 1024s –saying they weren’t planning on doing political activity, and then turning around and making large visible political expenditures. DOJ is feeling like it needs to respond, but want to talk to the right folks at IRS to see whether there are impediments from our side and what, if any damage this might do to IRS programs. I told him that sounded like we might need several folks from IRS,” Lerner wrote in a May 8, 2013 email to former Nikole C. Flax, who was former-Acting IRS Commissioner Steven T. Miller’s chief of staff.

Read more: Townhall

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More Mysterious Bailout for the Fed from Belgium

The economic elites will do anything to keep their biggest slaves (that would be the United States), and their biggest Pimp (that would be the Federal Reserve) in the financial game long enough to cement global control.

If you’re not into global macroeconomics… you may skip by this one, but… wouldn’t you really like to know whom you serve? The borrower is slave to the lender… and we’re the greatest slave nation in history, given our debt.

From ZeroHedge:

When we reported last month that in a shocking twist, “Belgium” holdings of Treasurys had soared by a massive amount in the past three months, making the tiny country the third largest holder of US paper, our Belgian readers took offsense alleging it is impossible that Belgium itself could be buying all this paper, explaining it was all Euroclear. Well, yes: we know and noted that, which is why those same readers probably should have actually read the part in the post which said: “our question is: just who is Belgium being used as a front for?

Recall that for years, the “UK” line item on TIC data was simply offshore accounts transaction on behalf of China. Of course, since China hasn’t added any net US paper holdings in the past year, the UK, and China, are both irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. “

So yes, to clarify for our trigger-happy Belgian (non) readers: it is quite clear that Belgium itself is not the buyer. What is not clear is who the mysterious buyer using Belgium as a front is. Because that same “buyer”, who to further explain is not China, just bought another whopping $ 31 billion in Treasurys in February, bringing the “Belgian” total to a record $ 341.2 billion, cementing “it”, or rather whoever the mysterious name behind the Euroclear buying rampage is, as the third largest holder of US Treasurys, well above the hedge fund buying community, also known as Caribbean Banking Centers, which held $ 300 billion in March.

The system is rigged. The Fed should die.

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Arab Winter Comes to America

Robert Spencer’s blockbuster new book was released this week. It’s not put-downable. Spencer nails it. Despite 9/11, the Times Square bomber, the Fort Hood jihad, the Christmas day bomber, the Christmas tree lighting bomber, the Boston bombing, etc., and hundreds of thwarted attacks, we are further back now than we were before 9/11. Robert Spencer’s Arab Winter Comes to America spells out how it came to this. In it, Spencer lays out how leftist and Muslim groups waged a jihad on truth and got Obama’s FBI and DHS to scrub counterterror training materials of all mention of Islam and jihad (not that Obama administration officials needed great persuasion: Spencer includes here multiple quotes from CIA director John Brennan, showing how positive and enthusiastic he is about Islam and jihad).

Chapter after chapter, Spencer shows how, after every jihad terror attack on American soil, American authorities rush to assure the American people that the attack had nothing to do with Islam, even when the attackers themselves point to the Quran to justify their murderous actions. Meanwhile, he goes into detail about how Islamic groups tied to Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), work to shut down every effective counter-terror program in place anywhere in the country, and to smear, discredit and marginalize every single person who stands up against jihad violence and Sharia oppression.

The result is that our government and law enforcement establishments, as well as the enemedia, refuse to talk honestly about the problem we face if they talk about it at all. Clearly, they don’t even properly understand it themselves. That is a recipe for disaster. And that disaster will surely come.

Spencer concludes the book with a series of solid, common-sense recommendations on what can be done to avert it, but they will only be adopted if there is a massive change in the political and media culture. That change is not on the horizon. How many more jihad mass murder attacks will it take before people wake up and turn out the officials who have betrayed us, and left us so much more vulnerable to Islamic jihad than we were before Barack Obama became President?

I loved the book. Get it here. I asked Robert about the book:

Geller: What possessed you to write this book now? Why?

Spencer: The denial of the nature and magnitude of the jihad threat is near-total. The only people who speak honestly about the threat we face are ostracized from mainstream discourse, vilified, ridiculed, defamed, and marginalized. Even the government and law enforcement officials are, as a matter of policy, ordered to ignore, deny and downplay the motives and goals of jihad terrorists. This is a recipe for disaster, and that disaster will surely come unless there is a substantial turnaround. I wrote this book to that end. Not that I think it will affect that turnaround in itself, but by chronicling the extent of the denial, as I do in the book, I hope to move some people to act to clear away the fog of deception and institute some more realistic policies.

Geller: You’ve made this the whole of your work for well over 15 years. What changes in the past 10 years have encouraged you? Distressed you?

Spencer: I’m afraid it has been mostly distress, although now I am way beyond distress. In the early years, I thought that there would be strong response not just in the U.S., but in the West and in non-Western nations that were also targets of jihad, against jihad terror and Islamic supremacism. I did not expect the massive and international capitulation to Islamic supremacist intimidation, such that while 25 years ago, when the Rushdie fatwa was first issued, there was a huge outpouring of support for the freedom of speech, now that freedom’s ostensibly foremost guardians readily agree that self-censorship is in order so as to avoid offending Muslims. We are well on our way to adopting, under the guise of avoiding and criminalizing “hate speech,” Sharia restrictions on criticism of Islam, thereby establishing Muslims (including jihad terrorists) as a protected class of which criticism is not allowed. And that will be the death of free society.

Geller: Are we winning this war?

Spencer: Not at all. Muslims riot and kill over cartoons and videos, and instead of telling them to grow up and explaining the cardinal importance of the freedom of speech to them, Western leaders (chief among them Obama) declare in ringing tones that speech that offends Muslims indeed should not be allowed. The implications of this capitulation have yet to be felt. But they will be, when free people wish to speak out against tyranny and find that all their avenues for doing so have been blocked in the interests of stopping “hate speech” — which is in the eye of the beholder in any case.

Geller: What’s the biggest failing of the West?

Spencer: Ethnocentrism. And the chief ethno centrists are the multiculturalists. They naively assume that the whole world thinks like they do, and wants what they want. It’s a false assumption, drastically false, and the fallout of its falsehood could bring down the West altogether.

Geller: What’s the biggest changes under the Obama administration?

Spencer: Although Bush proclaimed Islam a Religion of Peace, he did not stop the truth about Islam and jihad from being taught to military personnel and FBI agents (by, among others, me). But Obama foreclosed on that teaching after pressure from Islamic supremacist advocacy groups, many with ties to Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood. This is another decision with consequences that will be disastrous, and that have yet to be felt.

Geller: How has sharia moved into the American marketplace of ideas?

Spencer: As I explained above, it is now taken for granted even by the media that speech that offends Muslims must not be countenanced. Likewise, the idea that Islamic law and culture must always be accommodated, even at the expense of American law and custom, has gained widespread traction. The danger of this is that there is always more Sharia to accommodate, and as the only ones who are opposing this are branded and dismissed as “bigots” and “Islamophobes,” there is no one I can see who can or will stop the headlong rush to total capitulation.

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New York Gun Owners Shred Gun Registration Forms on SAFE Act Due Date

Citizens in Buffalo, refusing to comply with the SAFE Act by registering their so-called ‘assault weapons’, gathered today on the deadline for SAFE Act registrations and SHREDDED their gun registration forms. They had planned to burn them, but since open burning isn’t legal in Buffalo, they decided to shred them instead, just as our elected officials are shredding the Constitution. Their hope is to send a message to Cuomo that they will not comply with this unconstitutional law. via TheRightScoop
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Islamists kidnap 100 female students

MAIDUGURI, Nigeria (NEW YORK POST) — Heavily armed Islamic extremists abducted at least 100 female students from a school in northeast Nigeria before dawn Tuesday, but some of the teens managed to escape from the back of an open truck, officials said.

The tragedy came one day after a bombing killed more than 70 people in the city of Abuja.

The girls were seized after midnight from a school in Chibok, on the edge of the Sambisa Forest, an insurgent hideout, said Borno state police commissioner Tanko Lawan.

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Wonder why this New Republic writer thinks paying taxes is easy? This is his first year doing so himself.

If you think your taxes are too complicated, then Danny Vinik at The New Republic thinks you’re ridiculous:

A new poll from the Associated Press and GFP Public Affairs & Corporate Communications find some surprising results: Americans don’t think filing their taxes is hard. 58 percent of the 1,012 adults surveyed said filing their tax return was “very easy” or “somewhat easy.” Only 11 percent said it was “very hard” with another 27 percent saying it was “somewhat hard.”

Why aren’t Americans freaking out about tax day? Probably because filling out federal tax forms is pretty easy these days. 43 percent of respondents say they used a computer or website to do so while another 48 percent use a professional tax preparer. Only seven percent fill out tax forms by hand. And the vast majority of Americans (86 percent) are confident their taxes are correct. Just three percent are not confident.

He concludes taxes are so easy that Republicans are wrong to want to simplify them.

Of course, nearly 50% of Americans don’t have any federal tax liability. And millions use software or pay someone to do their taxes. Vinik, apparently, is one of them — or was up until this year:

If even a “community catalyst” and “tent captain” at Duke University needs to hire H&R Block, that tells you something.

Vinik seems to be under the impression that Republicans’ complaints about tax code complexity center on the number of tax brackets.

Daniel Rothschild of R Street Institute (a free market think tank) sets the record straight:

Well said.

Related:

Donald Rumsfeld has ‘absolutely no idea’ if his tax return is accurate

Michael Ian Black rants about Greg Gutfeld’s tax day rant; Gutfeld responds

Show us the money! Homer Hickam wants people to see where their tax dollars go


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How to be an Independent War Correspondent: Jeremy Scahill

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Want vs. Need? So, Who Are You, Mr. President?

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by Matt Daniels
Clash Daily Contributor

The role of the President of the United States is not one to be considered lightly. Throughout history, rarely has there been a POTUS that has met the approval of everyone. But is that necessary?

Perhaps the greatest problem facing our modern day Presidential issues can be summed up with a brief comparison: The President we want vs. The President we need.

Want: A President that is in touch with the poor as well as the wealthy, understands both sides and can look to the future with promises to represent all classes equally and fairly.

Need: A President that understands that there are poor and wealthy but will not diminish the latter for the fabled benefit of the former. There is a balance to be found, but not at the expense of hard working individuals that have earned their money. This, of course, leads to the problem with entitlement programs, which in turn leads to the next mini-debate.

Want: A President that helps the little guy and looks out for everyone equally, initiating programs that soften the blow of life’s difficulties so that everyone can look to the future with optimism.

Need: A President that is unwilling to go into even further debt in an effort to create or maintain a class of victims and Government dependents.

Charity, service and education are the building blocks of helping the struggling members of society overcome their woes. The first two examples cannot be forced or they do not work, and the third is a commitment that requires diligence on the part of those in need; falsely promising an easier way out does the poor and afflicted no favors.

Want: A President that gets me, understands all of us and can prove he’s a relatable person with a humanity and disposition that broadcasts friendship, likeability. We want a President that embodies every culture’s best traits simultaneously, a President that befriends the famous and promotes a vacation-like lifestyle. A President that can hit a jump-shot or belt out a few lines of the latest Billboard No. 1.

Need: A President that not only doesn’t know which movies are up for Academy Awards, but doesn’t care. What we need is a President that considers filling out an NCAA bracket a massive waste of time, that hanging out with celebrities is a mockery of the office and that using social media for anything other than legitimate presidential news is a tactless and disgusting practice. What we need is a President that understands his tenure in office means sacrificing a social life for the benefit of the rest of us.

There is no honest, moral reason for the President to claim and hold celebrity status—not a single good reason. The fact that we see this today in our President reminds us that it’s all about power, propaganda, and falsehoods. Deception as a means to distract from unmanaged issues and threats.

Want: A President that will consider the world’s needs daily, that will reach across the vast oceans and offer help; one that feels other countries are as great as America and deserve just as much attention, and that we should learn from them in order to better ourselves; one that grants blanketed acceptance of foreign policies, regardless of how dangerous they may be.

Need: A President that is adamant about America’s being the greatest country on the planet, that sticks to our traditions and roots and does not waiver in the face of foreign aggressors. We need a President that is willing to tell dictators and terrorists what the rest of us think, without blinking, and who is also willing to remind the rest of the world that we were founded by men that refused to compromise their beliefs for conveniences or anything else of the sort.

What we want is a President that reminds us all of fathers that take their kids fishing, that bandage our skinned knees and watch basketball games with us even though it’s passed our bedtimes.

But what we need, what we must have in order to remain free, is a President that reminds us all of the fathers who taught us about work, that made us do our chores instead of watching TV, that showed us love and respect through lessons learned the hard way; fathers that smile when a smile is due, but otherwise show how to shoulder burdens and difficulty with strength and composure.

Many of us (see also Conservatives) want and need the same things from our President, but all of us deserve a President that puts America and her people’s needs before his own selfish desires. The Founding Fathers were as fathers ought to be—caring, loving, teachers that are unwilling to let their children’s futures suffer by taking the easy way out.

What we have in office now is an uncle that we thought was kind of awesome, but is beginning to reek of dishonesty and booze…not a worthy figure to replace a father, nor hold the Presidency of the United States of America.

matt Daniels editMatt Daniels is a proud husband and father from Salt Lake City, who when not writing about politics or social issues spends his time writing comedic articles for various publications under the moniker Gary the Unicorn. Matt is also an accomplished musician, rabid Utah Jazz fan and supporter of the arts.

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Afghanistan Not Ready For Self-Government; The Blunt Response: “So What?”

We haven’t spent enough billions (trillions yet?) in Afghanistan. We haven’t sacrificed enough of our soldiers to death and maiming and PTSD yet. We haven’t killed enough Afghanis yet.

From the Washington Times:

Confidential U.S. assessments, which the State Department tried to hide from the public, show nearly all Afghan Cabinet ministries are woefully ill-prepared to govern after the U.S. withdraws its troops, often describing the gaps in knowledge, capability and safeguards as “critical” and describing an infrastructure in danger of collapsing if left to its own accord.

The State Department USAID reports, obtained by The Washington Times, paint a sobering portrait about the impact of the billions of dollars the U.S. has spent on nation-building over the past decade.

Treated as a whole, the reports suggest that the U.S. spending has yet to create a sustainable civilian government in Afghanistan and, in some cases, has been diverted to corrupt politicians or extremists looking to destabilize the country.

USAID officials told The Times on Tuesday that the risks of corruption and waste associated with trying to develop a government in Afghanistan have long been known and that U.S. taxpayers must be patient before they see further returns on their aid investments.

This is a shame but there is nothing we can do about it. There was reason for some severe reprisals against Afghanistan on the basis of Al Qaeda’s presence there, but nation-building was doomed from the start.

Nation-building was never going to work.

And the fact that nation-building has failed doesn’t justify more doomed nation-building to fix it. It can’t be fixed. We have to cut our losses and get out and let the Afghanis deal with their own problems.

We cannot keep sacrificing our troops and pushing billions into the lost cause. It is not the fault of Americans that the U.S. government endeavored to do the impossible for far too high a price in Afghanistan. Nothing justifies continuing to burden American soldiers and taxpayers with that burden.

The only possible way to positively benefit from Afghanistan is to learn the lesson to never try to invade a country and install a foreign government again. Sadly, some are working hard to make sure we don’t learn that lesson.

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