In our Liberty Update this week, we highlight the latest illegal leak of thousands of supposedly confidential…
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ProPublica/IRS Leak: There's No Underlying "There" There

In our Liberty Update this week, we highlight the latest illegal leak of thousands of supposedly confidential Internal Revenue Service (IRS) taxpayer returns spanning over 15 years, confirming that the partisan and power-hungry IRS simply cannot be trusted to safeguard our sensitive records, let alone to begin collecting sensitive private information from nonprofit organizations on donors who contribute to them in violation of the First Amendment.

Getting to the substance of the ProPublica/IRS leaked documents themselves, former Senator Phil Gramm and U.S. Policy Metrics partner Mike Solon explain in The Wall Street Journal how there's nothing scandalous in the least in what they reveal:

ProPublica’s 'blockbuster' story showing that the wealthy 'pay income taxes that are only…[more]

June 18, 2021 • 04:40 PM

Liberty Update

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Notable Quotes
 
On the Tide Turning Against 'Woke' Liberals:
 
 

"For the past year, liberals unleashed on the nation an avalanche of ideological nonsense, coupled with brutal pressure to conform. Those who bucked the party line found themselves canceled and unpersoned and had their opinions subjected to mockery and claims of delusion and 'anti-science' prejudices.

Until now. Because the tide is turning. And sometimes the break from the party line comes from surprising places.

Late-night comics are usually reliable parroters of the message of the day. So it says something that last week, Bill Maher launched an impassioned critique of 'woke' culture, while this week, Jon Stewart went on Stephen Colbert's show to say in no uncertain terms that it looks like the Wuhan coronavirus came from . . . the Wuhan lab.

Using a term from Harvard psychologist Steven Pinker, Maher accused liberals of 'progressophobia' -- 'a brain disorder that strikes liberals and makes them incapable of recognizing progress.'"

Read entire article here.

 
 
— Glenn Harlan Reynolds, InstaPundit.com Founder and Univ. of Tennessee Professor of Law
— Glenn Harlan Reynolds, InstaPundit.com Founder and Univ. of Tennessee Professor of Law
Posted June 18, 2021 • 07:35 AM
 
 
On Advancing the 'America Last' Policy:
 
 

"The most important takeaway from the recent G7 and NATO summits in Europe isn't President Biden's many embarrassing and unsettling mental lapses, long pauses, and rambling non sequiturs, but the clear message coming out of these meetings: the United States is returning to an Obama-Biden era 'America Last' foreign policy that puts the interests of multilateral institutions and international partnerships above the interests of the American people.

"That policy shift was perhaps best encapsulated in a quip from President Emmanuel Macron of France, who said of Biden, 'It is great to have a U.S. president who's part of the club and very willing to cooperate.' And of course it's true. At the close of the G7 Summit, Biden boasted that America is 'back at the table,' and described the summit as 'extraordinarily collaborative.'

"So what did this extraordinarily collaborative club manage to accomplish? One of the G7's most pressing tasks heading into the summit was what, if anything, it would do about an aggressive and intransigent China. What the group settled on was doing almost nothing."

Read entire article here.

 
 
— John Daniel Davidson, The Federalist
— John Daniel Davidson, The Federalist
Posted June 17, 2021 • 07:30 AM
 
 
On the Threat of Russia Post-Cold War:
 
 

"No one, save would-be despots, looks at the Russian 'model' as something they want to emulate. We're not competing with Russia for moral leadership.

"That's because Putin is better understood as a cross between a conventional mob boss, a James Bond villain and a Latin-American strongman. Estimates of his personal wealth range from $40 billion to $200 billion. Whatever the right number, he didn't get that rich from wisely investing his $300,000 salary.

"Putin holds onto power in part through crushing domestic opposition, intimidating or killing dissidents, blackmail, censorship and other tactics of ruthless tyrants. But he also maintains control by keeping Russian society in a constant state of crisis by relentlessly fueling paranoia that the West is at war with Russia and he's the only leader strong enough to hold her enemies at bay. A true Cold War nostalgic, he believes that relations with the West are zero-sum: Whatever is bad for the West is good for Russia. ...

"The idea that Biden (or anyone) can talk Putin out of his perceived self-interest is ludicrous. Someone who has clung to power through murder and oppression can't be made to see the light with finger-wagging bromides."

Read entire article here.

 
 
— Jonah Goldberg, Syndicated Columnist, Political Analyst and Commentator
— Jonah Goldberg, Syndicated Columnist, Political Analyst and Commentator
Posted June 16, 2021 • 07:28 AM
 
 
On Facing China's Threat:
 
 

"President Biden isn't known for austerity, except when it comes to defense.

"As part of his (welcome) emphasis on competition with China, Biden cajoled European countries at the G-7 summit into releasing a statement critical of Beijing. He also announced an infrastructure program meant to counter China's Belt and Road Initiative.

"That's all good, as far as it goes, but a glaring omission from Biden's campaign is a defense budget that reflects the seriousness of the growing challenge from Beijing.

"Indeed, Biden justifies almost any increased US spending as designed to check China's ambitions, at the same time he neglects what is most needful to keep China from dominating its region and waging war on our allies or America itself. ...

"Make no mistake -- Beijing is not so woolly-headed. Although you might miss it listening to Biden, there are threats from China that don't involve infrastructure spending or clean-energy initiatives.

"China has been growing its annual defense spending by more than 6 percent a year. Its navy has now surpassed that of the United States and is now technically the largest in the world. It is on pace to double its nuclear weapons over the next decade."

Read entire article here.

 
 
— Rich Lowry, National Review Editor
— Rich Lowry, National Review Editor
Posted June 15, 2021 • 07:40 AM
 
 
On Federal Judge Halting Biden's 'Unconstitutional' $4BN Program:
 
 

"A federal judge has halted Joe Biden's 'unconstitutional' $4 billion program to pay up to 120 percent of black, Hispanic, Asian or Native American farmers' debt, after 12 white farmers sued claiming it discriminated against them.

"Wisconsin Judge William Griesbach issued a temporary restraining order Thursday blocking the loan forgiveness program Biden put in place after saying he wanted to tackle longstanding inequalities for farmers of color.

"Judge Griesbach said the plan failed to provide adequate examples of recent hardships imposed on farmers from minority backgrounds. He also claimed that in trying to end one type of discrimination, the program ended up creating another. ...

"He said the lawsuit is 'likely to succeed on the merits of their claim' that the program's 'use of race-based criteria in the administration of the program violates their right to equal protection under the law.'"

Read entire article here.

 
 
— Rachel Sharp for Dailymail.com
— Rachel Sharp for Dailymail.com
Posted June 14, 2021 • 07:34 AM
 
 
On Myth of Voter Suppression:
 
 

"If you listened solely to Democratic talking points, including the so-called mainstream media, you would be convinced that America is a systemically racist nation and that Republicans are somehow hell bent on disenfranchising large swaths of voters. Both of these notions are patently false.

"In fact, thanks to sustained long-term efforts, in 2021 it is easier to register and vote now than at any point in American history -- no matter what color your skin is. This is a measure progress of which we should all be proud. ...

"Only two states have both higher voter registration among Black voters than White voters and had higher voter turnout of Black voters than White voters in 2020. Guess which two states?

"Mississippi and Tennessee.

"The worst state in America? Massachusetts. ...

"Democrats and their allies in the media would have you believe that rampant and systemic voter suppression is one of the most crucial issues facing our nation. This assertion is quite simply false."

Read entire article here.

 
 
— Ken Cuccinelli, Election Transparency Initiative, Former Virginia Attorney General and Acting Deputy Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security
— Ken Cuccinelli, Election Transparency Initiative, Former Virginia Attorney General and Acting Deputy Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security
Posted June 11, 2021 • 07:27 AM
 
 
On the NYT Embarrassing the NYT Over the American Flag:
 
 

"New York Times editorial board member Mara Gay has humiliated her employer.

"Again.

"Gay revealed this week she is 'disturbed' by conspicuous displays of the American flag, claiming the type of person who flies the flag from the back of a pickup truck is the type of person who wants to keep the United States all white. That a member of the New York Times's editorial board would assert such an asinine thing is embarrassment enough for the newspaper. But it gets worse. The paper of record is tripping over itself to defend Gay's half-baked musings, claiming she did not, in fact, say the thing she absolutely said. ...

"The American flag is ubiquitous. You see it flown everywhere in this country, in both heavily Democratic and heavily Republican counties. You see it flown with great pride in our largest cities and smallest towns. In fact, there are no small amount of pictures online showing trucks bearing both the American flag and pro-Joe Biden paraphernalia. Also, the very idea that the flag has been 'politicized' is rather preposterous as flags are inherently political. Have you ever heard of an apolitical national flag?"

Read entire article here.

 
 
— Becket Adams, Washington Examiner Commentary Writer
— Becket Adams, Washington Examiner Commentary Writer
Posted June 10, 2021 • 08:11 AM
 
 
On the 'Confidentiality' of Americans' Tax Returns:
 
 

"'Taxpayers have the right to expect that any information they provide to the IRS will not be disclosed unless authorized by the taxpayer or by law,' declares the Internal Revenue Service.

"Unless, of course, someone within the agency chooses to leak your return to ProPublica.

"The news organization publishes a vast trove of information about the country's wealthiest taxpayers and declares this morning, 'we obtained the information from an anonymous source who provided us with large amounts of information on the ultrawealthy, everything from the taxes they paid to the income they reported to the profits from their stock trades ... We also believe that disclosure of specific figures about the tax returns of people like Jeff Bezos, Michael Bloomberg, Warren Buffett and Elon Musk will deepen readers' interest and understanding of this complex and arcane subject.'

"The relevant question is not whether you like Jeff Bezos, Michael Bloomberg, Warren Buffett and Elon Musk. The question is whether the IRS declaration that tax returns are confidential applies to everyone or not. This morning it's pretty clear that the your tax return is confidential, as long as no one at the IRS thinks it is newsworthy. But if they do, you're screwed. (It is highly unlikely that anyone outside of the IRS would have access to the tax returns of all of these figures.) ...

"It's probably those darned low-level employees in Cincinnati again."

Read entire article here.

 
 
— Jim Geraghty, National Review
— Jim Geraghty, National Review
Posted June 09, 2021 • 07:40 AM
 
 
On Senator Joe Manchin's (D-WV) Opposition to the 'For the People' Act:
 
 

"On Sunday, the Charleston Gazette-Mail published an op-ed by Sen. Joe Manchin in which the West Virginia Democrat announced his opposition of the For the People Act, a bill that aims to impose a variety of election-related laws on states across the country.

"Without Manchin's support, the odds that the For the People Act will become law any time soon have effectively sunk to zero.

"According to Manchin, the primary reason he is not willing to vote for the legislation is that he believes the For the People Act poses a serious danger to the future of the country.

"'I believe that partisan voting legislation will destroy the already weakening blinds of our democracy, and for that reason, I will vote against the For The People Act,' Manchin wrote in his article.

"It might sound like hyperbole to some, but Manchin's concern about the threat posed by the partisan nature of the bill is absolutely right. The For the People Act is truly one of the most troubling pieces of legislation proposed in recent memory. Should it ever become law, voters' faith in elections would be eroded, regardless of whether widespread voter fraud actually occurs."

Read entire article here.

 
 
— Justin Haskins, Heartland Institute Editorial Director
— Justin Haskins, Heartland Institute Editorial Director
Posted June 08, 2021 • 07:38 AM
 
 
On the Need for a Filibuster Rule:
 
 

"Democrats, media figures and activists are aware of the hypocrisy over the filibuster rule and its long defense by Democrats as a positive democratic device. That is why there is a concerted effort to portray support for the filibuster as racist. It is a familiar pattern in silencing an opposing view: Frame the rule as racist, and dismiss the consensus arguments accepted just a few years ago in defense of the rule. You then pass bills on straight party line votes in the name of national unity.

"The filibuster has gone through historic controversies through the centuries, from opposing Caesar to opposing civil rights. But as a consensus-forcing rule, its time may have arrived, to the chagrin of many."

Read entire article here.

 
 
— Jonathan Turley, George Washington University Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law and Practicing Criminal Defense Attorney
— Jonathan Turley, George Washington University Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law and Practicing Criminal Defense Attorney
Posted June 07, 2021 • 07:27 AM
 
Quiz Question   
What was the highest year-over-year inflation rate since the consumer price index has been used to calculate it?
More Questions
Notable Quote   
 
"For the past year, liberals unleashed on the nation an avalanche of ideological nonsense, coupled with brutal pressure to conform. Those who bucked the party line found themselves canceled and unpersoned and had their opinions subjected to mockery and claims of delusion and 'anti-science' prejudices.Until now. Because the tide is turning. And sometimes the break from the party line comes from surprising…[more]
 
 
—Glenn Harlan Reynolds, InstaPundit.com Founder and Univ. of Tennessee Professor of Law
— Glenn Harlan Reynolds, InstaPundit.com Founder and Univ. of Tennessee Professor of Law
 
Liberty Poll   

Are your local schools currently facing open debate with parents regarding the introduction of radical leftist ideological positions into the curricula?