In this week's Liberty Update we highlight the potentially catastrophic threat of H.R. 3, the healthcare…
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Quote of the Day: WSJ on H.R. 3, Biden & Pelosi's Dangerous Healthcare Bill

In this week's Liberty Update we highlight the potentially catastrophic threat of H.R. 3, the healthcare and drug price control bill that Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi are attempting to rush through Congress.  The Wall Street Journal helpfully offers further insight this morning on how H.R. 3 would threaten lifesaving U.S. pharmaceutical innovation and leadership, including on things like the Covid vaccines:

 

Companies that refuse the government’s price must pay a 95% excise tax on all revenue they generate from that drug in the U.S.  They’d also have to offer the government price to private insurers.  There’s no “negotiation” when a gun is pointed at your head.  A new study in the Journal of the American Medical Association estimates that drug spending in the U.S…[more]

September 17, 2021 • 12:55 PM

Liberty Update

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Notable Quotes
 
On Memorial Day:
 
 

"May we never forget our fallen comrades. Freedom isn't free."

 
 
— Sergeant Major Bill Paxton, Bronze Star and Purple Heart Recipient, 30 year USMC active duty, "Retired, but still active"
— Sergeant Major Bill Paxton, Bronze Star and Purple Heart Recipient, 30 year USMC active duty, "Retired, but still active"
Posted May 31, 2021 • 08:27 AM
 
 
On Whether a New Poll on Israel is a Red Flag for Democrats:
 
 

"The Squad might get headlines for its attacks on Israel during conflicts with Hamas, but they might end up marginalizing their party. A new Fox poll shows Americans back Israel by well over a 2:1 margin over the Palestinians, even while progressives in Congress accuse Israel of running an 'apartheid state.' Majorities of respondents also favor military aid and direct sales of weaponry to Israel, too ...

"The strident and radical messaging from the Squad and other progressives in the Democratic ranks cut directly against this solidified political consensus. American voters don't necessarily choose party affiliation over foreign-policy issues, but it's yet another way in which Democrats appear more and more radical and antithetical to the political consensus. That will have a corrosive effect, especially given the rash of attacks on Jews recently in American cities by pro-Palestinian activists. Progressives are playing with fire in more than one sense, and it's Democrats who may eventually get burned at the ballot box because of it."

 
 
— Ed Morrissey, Hot Air Senior Editor
— Ed Morrissey, Hot Air Senior Editor
Posted May 28, 2021 • 07:34 AM
 
 
On Fact-Checkers and Actual Reporting:
 
 

"It is time for the news business to admit that 'fact-checking' is a tiresome, misleading, and dishonest blight on actual reporting. ...

"'Fact-checkers,' often employed by full-time 'fact-checking' organizations, are widely granted weighty authority they haven't earned and don't deserve. Members of the fact-checker species are no more likely to be right than the reporters whose work they presume to judge. They are themselves often merely former reporters who reached their ceiling in real journalism, or else young novices who have still to learn how it's done. Yet they're accorded outsize gravitas. That's why shallow would-be rebuttals that are really nothing more than opinion pieces are often labeled 'fact checks.' Their stolen authority conceals rather than exposes the truth.

"Scratch a fact-checker and he's just another guy lugging around his prejudices and thinking (like a grumpy reader) that a story is flat wrong just because it isn't written the way he'd have written it. It's more than a decade since I told my reporters not even to refer in their stories to fact-checkers' findings. Because they're irrelevant. That a fact-checker concludes X, Y, or Z usually reveals nothing useful.

"Yet fact-checking has spread like a nasty rash over the nether regions of our profession. The people conferring 'pinocchios' and 'pants on fire' ratings are as likely as not to base their decisions on criteria less related to accuracy than to personal taste, ideology, or slavish acceptance and imposition of a tyrannical orthodoxy."

 
 
— Hugo Gurdon, Washington Examiner Editor-in-Chief
— Hugo Gurdon, Washington Examiner Editor-in-Chief
Posted May 27, 2021 • 07:31 AM
 
 
On Surging Crime Rate and the 2022 Midterm Elections:
 
 

"A rise in violent crime is endangering slim Democratic congressional majorities more than a year out from the midterm elections and threatening to revive 'law and order' as a major campaign issue for Republicans for the first time since the 1990s.

"Homicides in cities increased by up to 40% over the previous year, the biggest single-year increase since 1960, a trend that has not abated so far in 2021. Sixty-three of the 66 largest police jurisdictions saw a rise in at least one category of violent crime, ranging from homicide and rape to robbery and assault, according to the Major Cities Chiefs Association. Homicides and shootings have gone up for three straight years in Washington, D.C., and at least a dozen mass shootings were reported nationwide over the weekend. ...

"'Rising crime is a problem that must be addressed through both economic policies that are incentives to work while also giving law enforcement the support they need to enforce our laws,' said GOP strategist Jon Gilmore. 'Republicans were successful in the 2020 cycle by addressing this important issue, and they would be wise to continue that drumbeat in the midterms.'"

 
 
— W. James Antle III, Washington Examiner Politics Editor
— W. James Antle III, Washington Examiner Politics Editor
Posted May 26, 2021 • 07:32 AM
 
 
On Waste, Fraud and Abuse in Biden Administration's COVID Relief:
 
 

"President Biden's COVID relief is quickly devolving into shocking stories of waste, fraud and abuse, along with a dose of misdirection and political spin.

"Biden bellowed on COVID relief, 'This historic legislation is about rebuilding the backbone of this country and giving people in this nation, working people, middle-class folks, people who built the country, a fighting chance.' That was the promise, but that is not the reality.

"What Biden didn't tell Americans is their money is actually being sent overseas for projects bearing little relation to the public health crisis. Scuba gear in Uruguay, gas turbine engines in Canada, HIV research in Ukraine, and management consulting services in Fiji are all part of what Democrats consider urgent emergency relief. Even 'Disinformation and fake news, TV, radio and multimedia project for PD' in South America via the Department of State.

"These are just some of the grants listed at pandemicoversight.gov, where the government's independent inspectors general have created an important resource for Americans to monitor government aid. ...

"It is incumbent upon American citizens and responsible media to watch closely where these emergency dollars end up and to hold accountable those who perpetuate waste, fraud and abuse because what we are being told is not what is actually happening."

Read entire article here.

 
 
— Jason Chaffetz, Fox News Contributor, Former U.S. Representative (R-UT) and Former Chairman of the U.S. House Oversight Committee
— Jason Chaffetz, Fox News Contributor, Former U.S. Representative (R-UT) and Former Chairman of the U.S. House Oversight Committee
Posted May 25, 2021 • 07:50 AM
 
 
On the Origins of the COVID-19 Pandemic:
 
 

"You may have noticed that after a year in which almost every health authority closed ranks to say that it was ridiculous to believe that COVID-19 emerged from a lab in Wuhan, now there is a rush to the microphones and newspapers to at least entertain the lab-leak theory. Dr. Fauci himself, who had dismissed the lab-escape theory as unscientific, is now saying he is 'not convinced' that COVID emerged in nature, or at a wet market. Even the head of the World Health Organization said the lab leak couldn't be ruled out, after a WHO investigation that was practically designed to rule out the lab-leak theory. Now the Wall Street Journal is reporting that U.S. intelligence had reports in November of 2019 that several staff at the Wuhan lab fell sick and had to be hospitalized."

Read entire article here.

 
 
— Michael Brendan Dougherty, National Review Online
— Michael Brendan Dougherty, National Review Online
Posted May 24, 2021 • 07:24 AM
 
 
On Legislation to Prevent Weaponizing the IRS Act:
 
 

"As the Biden administration takes shape as an even more aggressive third term for President Barack Obama, Republican senators have proposed legislation to prevent a repeat of the 2013 IRS targeting scandal.

"On Thursday, 43 Republican senators led by Mike Braun of Indiana and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, proposed the 'Don't Weaponize the IRS Act' to codify a Trump-era rule passed last year aimed at stopping the IRS from targeting 501c4 tax-exempt groups based on their political ideology. The proposed law would maintain the right of select tax-exempt groups from disclosing confidential identity information of major donors on annual returns with the government. ...

"'The American people remember all too well what can happen when the IRS is allowed to subject individuals to unequal scrutiny, depending on their political beliefs,' McConnell said in a statement. 'The prior administration was right to intervene and put hard limits on the sort of personal information unelected bureaucrats could demand from nonprofit organizations and their donors.'"

 
 
— Tristan Justice, The Federalist
— Tristan Justice, The Federalist
Posted May 21, 2021 • 07:22 AM
 
 
On How the 'For the People Act' Will Harm Faith in U.S. Elections:
 
 

"As a Black man who has voted in the South all my life, voting rights are personal to me.

"As I said in my speech: I support making it easier to vote and harder to cheat. So do my fellow Republicans, and so do voters.

"But the Democrats so-called 'For the People Act' would actually make it easier to cheat and harder to vote. It is not a voting rights bill. It is a partisan power grab that would destroy confidence in our election system.

"Democrats are attempting to rewrite the rules to take control away from state and local officials and put the federal government in charge. This unethical approach to nationalizing elections is inconsistent with the Constitution and inconsistent with commonsense. It doesn't take an expert to realize the needs of New York are different from the needs of South Carolina. ...

"Among the most egregious provisions is the push to gut voter ID laws. The prevailing liberal argument that voter ID requirements are unpopular and aimed at suppressing the minority vote is simply not rooted in facts. In a Senate committee hearing last week, Democrats made the case for their proposals by repeating those false claims. But recent polling shows that the majority of Americans are in favor of voter ID requirements, including large majorities of Black people and Hispanics.

"That's because voter ID, along with many other commonsense election laws, give folks confidence that our elections are secure, fair, and accurate. Eliminating these laws also eliminates confidence in the process. History shows that low trust in elections results in depressed turnout."

Read entire article here.

 
 
— U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-SC)
— U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-SC)
Posted May 20, 2021 • 07:42 AM
 
 
On the Danger of Bringing Back Big Government:
 
 

"In the debate between liberals and conservatives, the role of government is a favorite topic. After decades of growth in the size and role of the federal government, Ronald Reagan famously began his presidency in the 1980s by saying, 'Government is not the solution to our problems; government is the problem.' Even Democrat Bill Clinton acknowledged in the 1990s that 'the era of big government is over.'

"Well, big government is back in the 2020s. President Joe Biden is proposing nearly $6 trillion in new government spending, doubling the entire federal budget for 2021. Biden told Congress and the nation last month, 'We have to prove that government still works and can deliver for our people.' COVID-19 relief, infrastructure, education, child care, unemployment relief -- seemingly nothing is beyond the scope of Biden's federal government. Increased federal powers and spending from the coronavirus crisis are rolling forward into all aspects of life. ...

"All this massive new federal spending comes at exactly the wrong time with inflation already on the rise. But the greater danger is moving the federal government into everything from home healthcare to electric vehicles and beyond. That is the kind of big government we need to turn back."

Read entire article here.

 
 
— David Davenport, Hoover Institution Research Fellow and Ashbrook Center Senior Fellow
— David Davenport, Hoover Institution Research Fellow and Ashbrook Center Senior Fellow
Posted May 19, 2021 • 07:29 AM
 
 
On Climate Change Taxes:
 
 

"Recent polling from Americans for Tax Reform reaffirms voters do not support more job-killing energy taxes, with 58% of poll respondents stating they are 'not willing to pay more in taxes to address climate change.' These results show just how out of touch the radical Left is with the public as it attempts to shove the Green New Deal and other expensive and ineffective climate initiatives down their throats.

"A $40-per-ton carbon tax, for example, would immediately raise the price of gasoline by 36 cents per gallon and have a devastating impact on low-income families. What's worse is that higher energy prices -- which create higher utility bills, gas prices, and food costs -- tend to hurt poor and middle-class households more than wealthier households.

"Make no mistake: Despite its political failures, the big-government Left remains hellbent on imposing a national carbon tax, showing time and again that it is completely out of touch with the public. Case in point: Progressives continue attempts to pass the Green New Deal, which, among other things, aims to get rid of airplanes and cows."

 
 
— Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA) and Grover Norquist, Americans for Tax Reform President
— Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA) and Grover Norquist, Americans for Tax Reform President
Posted May 18, 2021 • 07:29 AM
 
Quiz Question   
What is the single deadliest disease epidemic to the U.S. population in history?
More Questions
Notable Quote   
 
"US presidents rarely look to make waves with speeches to the annual United Nations General Assembly, but President Joe Biden's nearly 40-minute talk Tuesday actually challenged global leaders ... to stay awake.The world, Biden lectured, needs to 'act together.' This is a 'decisive decade.' We must work to prevent pandemics and fight climate change. 'We stand at an inflection point in history,' have…[more]
 
 
—New York Post Editorial Board
— New York Post Editorial Board
 
Liberty Poll   

Of the presidents who have presided over the Afghanistan war, which one deserves the worst grade as the U.S. observes the 20th anniversary of 9-11?