Americans are by now broadly aware of the threat posed by Chinese-owned TikTok, including its threat…
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TikTok’s Latest Assault: Ripping Off American Artists and Songwriters

Americans are by now broadly aware of the threat posed by Chinese-owned TikTok, including its threat to U.S. national security.

In recent days, we’ve witnessed in real time another emerging TikTok threat reaching the headlines:  The threat it poses to intellectual property protections, which undergird America’s status as the most artistically and musically productive and influential nation in human history.

Universal Music Group, however, has decided to stand up and fight back by removing its catalog of songs – including artists like Taylor Swift, Drake and Billie Eilish – from TikTok.

Tone-Deaf TikTok has built its aggressive worldwide empire largely on the backs of music created by American artists, as even its corporate leadership openly admits.  As TikTok’s very own…[more]

February 08, 2024 • 12:44 PM

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“Recovery Summer,” Episode V – New Government Report Shows U.S. Economy Stalling Five Years into Recovery Print
By Timothy H. Lee
Thursday, August 01 2013
Simply put, the Obama recovery hasn’t been a recovery at all.

Three long years ago this week, on August 2, 2010, former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner announced unambiguously in The New York Times, “Welcome to the Recovery.” 

That was during the second of the Obama Administration’s so-called “Recovery Summers.”  Now into our fifth such summer, Americans still await an actual recovery. 

That unfortunate reality was reinforced this week, when the U.S. Commerce Department announced second-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) growth of just 1.7%.  That follows first-quarter 2013 growth of just 1.1%, and fourth-quarter 2012 growth of just 0.1%.  Together, that means our economy has grown less than 1% over the past nine months. 

That obviously provides additional confirmation that Obama’s economic agenda has failed, even as he barnstorms the country demanding more of the same.  But it is also ominous for what it suggests lies ahead.  As noted by Spencer Jakab of The Wall Street Journal this week: 

“Growth below 2% for multiple quarters is thought to heighten the risk of recession.  A Fed study in spring 2011 quantified the perils of stalling.  It found a dip below 2% GDP growth – on a year-over-year basis rather than an annualized measure – was followed by a recession 70% of the time.” 

Notably, the Commerce Department report also refuted the Obama Administration’s predictions of disaster during the federal budget sequester debates, and more on that in a moment. 

But first, some perspective on the latest economic numbers. 

Since 1929, the average U.S. economic growth rate has been 3.3%.  Obviously, that number is statistically weighed down by the fact that the Great Depression began in 1929, and the average also includes the 2008-09 downturn.  But even at that, the second-quarter’s 1.7% growth is just half of the U.S. long-term average, and the last three quarters less than one-third that average. 

For further reference, growth averaged a robust 4.4% between 1983 to 1989 following the Reagan tax cuts, strong dollar policy and deregulation.  For what it’s worth, even George W. Bush saw an average of 2.52% GDP growth during the first 18 quarters of his tenure, compared with 1.62% during Obama’s first 18 quarters.  While Obama’s defenders will assert that his numbers are reduced by the recession he inherited from Bush, Bush can similarly assert that his numbers were reduced by the recession he inherited from Clinton in 2001. 

Moreover, even excluding the 2009 recessionary quarters and counting only those since the recovery began in mid-2009, Obama has averaged just 2.2% growth.  Post-recession recovery periods typically show stronger-than-average growth due to the rebound effect, but even Obama’s “recovery” comes in below Bush’s average for the same period in his presidency, which includes the 2001 recessionary period. 

Simply put, the Obama recovery hasn’t been a recovery at all. 

Even more ominously for his administration and its supporters, public opinion increasingly reflects the failure of his agenda. 

According to Rasmussen, nearly twice as many Americans report that their finances are getting worse rather than better, by a 40% to 24% margin.  And according to the left-leaning Pew Research Center, some 70% of Americans say that the economic recovery has not yet begun, dwarfing the 28% who say that it is underway.  That same Pew survey shows that an overwhelming 82% majority rate economic conditions as “Poor” or “Only Fair,” while just 17% say they’re “Excellent” or “Good.”  In the fifth year of a recovery, that speaks volumes. 

Perhaps most alarmingly for the Obama Administration and his cheerleaders at MSNBC, the public now says it trusts Republicans more than Obama on the economy, which remains the most important issue facing the country. 

Returning to the sequester debate and Obama’s assurances that it would bring catastrophe, the Commerce Department report pours cold water on that claim.  According to the data, government spending only affected second-quarter GDP by 0.1%.  That compares with a 1.3% impact in the fourth quarter of 2012 and 0.8% impact in the first quarter of 2013. 

Meanwhile, 2 million fewer Americans are employed today than in 2008, even though our population has increased by 13 million during that span.  And median household income is now $51,500, down $171 from 2012’s $51,671.  It’s also $2,718 lower – some 5% – than the $54,218 median income in July 2009 when the current “recovery” began. 

Recessions and recoveries come and go in our market economy.  What distinguishes this cycle, however, is the unprecedented onslaught of wasteful spending, record deficits, higher taxes and more regulation under Obama.  The accumulating data shows the disastrous result – the worst recovery in recorded history. 

Americans must bear that in mind as Obama and the political left demand more of what got us here as another debt limit and budget debate approach. 

Notable Quote   
 
"Mitch McConnell changed the direction of the world. He stopped the destruction of the Republican Party by opposing, delaying and weakening and ultimately defeating the drive for 'campaign finance reform' that would have left union bosses as the sole power in America. Senator McConnell herorically sculpted the present Supreme Court and saved the second amendment, religious liberty and free speech.…[more]
 
 
— Grover Norquist, President of Americans for Tax Reform
 
Liberty Poll   

Assuming that Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., is able to get on most 2024 ballots as a third-party or independent candidate for President, from which major party candidate do you believe he will take the most votes?