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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Finally, Biden Admits: There's a Crisis at the Border Print
By Byron York
Wednesday, January 31 2024
A crisis! Finally, Biden has conceded what has been obvious from nearly the moment he took office.

What do you call it when somewhere between 6 and 8 million people enter the United States illegally in the course of three years? Many people would call it a crisis, albeit a man-made one, since the reason so many have been able to cross illegally into the United States is the refusal, by President Joe Biden, to enforce immigration laws that authorize him to stop the incursion at any time.

For years, the Biden administration denied the seriousness of the situation and steadfastly refused to call the crisis a crisis. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, in particular, has gone to great lengths to avoid the word. On many occasions Mayorkas has conceded that the situation is a "challenge," but definitely, absolutely, totally not a crisis. 

On March 1, 2021, as the Biden administration was just beginning its long, ambitious project to open the border, Mayorkas met the press in the White House briefing room and pointedly declined to call the situation on the border, in which the number of illegal crossers was already skyrocketing, a "crisis." Mayorkas wouldn't even discourage illegal crossers from coming to the border. He just asked them to wait a little while so the Biden administration could get things ready for them.

"We are not saying, 'Don't come,'" Mayorkas said. "We are saying, 'Don't come now because we will be able to deliver a safe and orderly process to them as quickly as possible.'"

And on it went. As the number of illegal crossings grew and grew, Mayorkas would declare, with a straight face, that the border was "closed." He told potential illegal border crossers not to come while at the same time worked to increase the administration's ability to process, care for, and relocate the illegal crossers. Talk about a mixed message. Nobody listened to the administration's declaration that the border was "closed." Instead, they just came right in, and, as promised, Biden allowed most of them to stay.

Through it all, the president would never agree that the situation on the border constituted a crisis. So now, fast forward to today's standoff in the Senate over a bill that would include, all in one big package, aid to Ukraine, aid to Israel, aid to Taiwan and a far-reaching reworking of the immigration system. Biden has insisted that they must all be passed together, all or nothing. If Congress were to pass a bill with one or two of those provisions, but not the others, Biden has said he would veto it.

The problem with Biden's ultimatum is that it is almost impossible to pass a far-reaching reworking of the immigration system. Lawmakers have tried and failed for decades. It is the most difficult and intractable issue in American politics. So Biden has linked desperately needed aid to Ukraine, for example, to passing an immigration bill, which reduces the chances of success to nearly zero.

With Congress deadlocked, Biden has begun to make wild promises. Campaigning in South Carolina recently, he said, "If that bill were the law today, I'd shut down the border right now and fix it quickly." That's hard to believe, to say the least. From the moment he became president of the United States, Biden has had the authority to stop or restrict the flow of illegal migrants into the U.S. He needs no new law to give him that authority. In fact, what the bill under consideration would actually do is regularize the arrival of up to 5,000 illegal migrants into the United States each and every day. Only if the level rose above that for a week would Biden take action to stop the flow. And even then, as always, there would be a lot of restrictions.

But give Biden this: In his desperate campaigning for an immigration bill, the president has done something else neither he nor anyone in his administration has ever done: He has admitted that the situation on the border is a crisis. 

In a statement last Friday, Biden said he had directed administration officials "to begin negotiations with a bipartisan group of senators to seriously, and finally, address the border crisis." He finished the statement with a challenge to Congress: "If you're serious about the border crisis, pass a bipartisan bill and I will sign it."

A crisis! Finally, Biden has conceded what has been obvious from nearly the moment he took office. That won't make the Capitol Hill negotiations go any better  they are probably doomed to fail  but it is a major step in the president admitting reality.

Byron York is chief political correspondent for The Washington Examiner.


Notable Quote   
"Significantly more Americans name immigration as the most important problem facing the U.S. (28%) than did a month ago (20%). Immigration has now passed the government as the most often cited problem, after the two issues tied for the top position the past two months. The government ranked first each month from January through November 2023.In the latest poll, 20% of Americans name the government…[more]
— Jeffrey Jones, Gallup Senior Editor
Liberty Poll   

Would you feel safer riding in a self-driving car or one driven by Vin Diesel?