For over two weeks now, failed retransmission negotiations between AT&T and Nexstar Media Group…
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TV Blackouts Reconfirm Need for Free Market Regulatory Reform

For over two weeks now, failed retransmission negotiations between AT&T and Nexstar Media Group have deprived customers across the United States of 120 Nexstar television stations in 97 markets.

That's unfortunately something to which far too many Americans have become accustomed recently, as 2019 has already witnessed more TV blackouts than any year in history.  And the news only gets worse:  CBS is now warning that stations in numerous major markets, including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas and others, could be blacked out as this week concludes.

Here's the overarching problem.  Current laws dating all the way back to 1992 empower the federal government to pick TV market winners and losers by tipping the scales during negotiations.  Those laws governing what…[more]

July 18, 2019 • 08:58 pm

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While You Were Caucusing: Obama’s 4 Moves That Hurt America Print
By Ashton Ellis
Thursday, January 05 2012
With his end-of-year shenanigans, President Obama assured us his corrupt style of governing will be going into overdrive in 2012...

In the run-up to the Republican Iowa caucuses, President Barack Obama and his subordinates made several controversial moves to gin up liberal support while conservatives weren’t paying attention.  Here are four of the worst. 

1. Overruling South Carolina’s Voter ID Law

Just before Christmas, Eric Holder’s Justice Department sent a strongly worded letter to South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley claiming the state’s recently passed Voter ID law does not comply with federal law.  Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act requires certain states like South Carolina to get “pre-clearance” from Justice before making changes that effect voters. 

Following the lead of more than 30 states – including nearly identical laws passed by Georgia and Indiana in the last six years – South Carolina changed its law to require voters to present a valid photo ID when casting a ballot.  If the cost of an ID is too expensive, the state government will provide it for free and drive a citizen to and from the location to obtain it. 

Despite all of these measures, Holder denied South Carolina’s pre-clearance request on the grounds that the law will unfairly affect non-whites.  In other words, it’s racist to ask a person to show a photo ID before deciding who runs the government.  Remember that the next time you’re walking through a TSA pat-down or a Customs check. 

2. Fast-Tracking Immigrant Visas Despite Warnings About Fraud

A recently uncovered Inspector General’s report proves that there is at least one area where the Obama Administration wants bureaucrats to say yes rather than no: visa applications.  The report, obtained by The Daily, documents repeated pressure to approve visa requests, even when frontline agents think the applications should be denied due to tell-tale signs of fraud.  Other visas were denied because the applicant seemed to pose a national security risk.  Agents with low visa approval rates were demoted or relocated. 

The House Judiciary Committee is launching an investigation into the alleged abuses and will hold its first hearing in February.  Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-TX) said, “It’s outrageous that administration officials would compromise national security for their own political agenda and gain.” 

One wonders what Smith will think when he hears about the next Christmas break surprise. 

3. Releasing Terrorists from Guantanamo Bay

The first rule of negotiation is to be able to walk away without a deal.  This implies that you don’t start delivering value before negotiations even take place.  Yet the Obama Administration has agreed to release Taliban terrorists held at the Guantanamo Bay prison facility as a pre-condition for starting peace talks with the group. 

Here’s what America gets in return: a promise from the Taliban to open a political office in Qatar to discuss peace options “with the international community.”  So, the Taliban gets personnel, real estate and international legitimacy while the U.S. gets…what?  The ability to reroute money from housing and feeding terrorists to guns and aircraft designed to kill them when they fight us again? 

To add insult to injury, the Taliban are currently holding hostage Bowe Bergdahl, a 25-year-old Army sergeant captured in 2009.  So far, there is no indication from U.S. authorities that releasing several high-value Taliban leaders will result in a prisoner swap for Bergdahl.  That should be a given at this point, but Obama seems content to bend over backwards to placate our enemies while leaving fellow citizens high and dry. 

4. Giving Fake Recess Appointments to Anti-Business Zealots

Presidents use recess appointments to install nominees they want when the Senate won’t confirm them.  The key to a recess appointment is, of course, that the Senate that must vote on the nominee is actually recessed.  Article I, Section 5 of the Constitution says that “Neither House, during the Session of Congress, shall, without the Consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days.”  House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) never gave his chamber’s consent because he rightly figured Obama would use the break to fill vacancies with leftwing nominees. 

And so he has.  On January 4, 2012, Obama tried to shield three activist attorneys with one respectable nominee by installing all of them in key regulatory positions without the Senate’s consent.  Richard Cordray will oversee the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a regulatory creation of the Dodd-Frank bill housed in the Federal Reserve whose funding is not subject to congressional appropriation or oversight.  Two of the other three appointments – union-affiliated lawyers Sharon Block and Richard Griffin – will swing the National Labor Relations Board dramatically against business interests; an impressive feat since the NLRB is the entity that stopped Boeing from building a new plant in right-to-work South Carolina.  Terence Flynn, the lone Republican in the non-recess recess appointments, deserves a seat on the NLRB, but not in this fashion. 


With his end-of-year shenanigans, President Obama assured us his corrupt style of governing will be going into overdrive in 2012, and, given the last example above, he's already started.  Hopefully, it’s the last year he’ll have the opportunity.   

Question of the Week   
On July 20, 1969, the first man to walk on the Moon was Neil Armstrong, making “one giant leap for Mankind.” Who was the last person to walk on the Moon?
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Quote of the Day   
 
"Sen. Bernie Sanders is one of the many faces that make up the progressive left within the Democratic Party. He's an unapologetic democratic socialist. He has an economic agenda that would cost us trillions of dollars. And he's staunchly pro-labor union. That is until his campaign staff starts making demands for better pay, right? Yeah, it seems so. The Sanders campaign has unionized and is demanding…[more]
 
 
—Matt Vespa, Townhall.com Senior Editor
— Matt Vespa, Townhall.com Senior Editor
 
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