"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." -- Mahatma Gandhi

Left Successfully Achieving Political Aims Through Violent Coercion

June 23rd, 2020 by MarkTwain ·

AP featured image
A statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee is removed from the University of Texas campus, early Monday morning, Aug. 21, 2017, in Austin, Texas. University of Texas President Greg Fenves ordered the immediate removal of statues of Robert E. Lee and other prominent Confederate figures from a main area of campus, saying such monuments have become “symbols of modern white supremacy and neo-Nazism.” (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

By Christopher Arps

I have to admit I find no particular pleasure in writing this piece. I am usually the eternal optimist. Hell, I’ve been a member of my local Optimist International club for over seventeen years now! No matter how dark the circumstances have been in my life, my faith in God and sincere belief HE will show me the correct path has always sustained me through my most trying times.

I still believe that with all my heart but my consternation lies solely in what I see currently happening in our country. I know this is not the first time our country has experienced societal unrest and change. I was born in the mid 1960’s so I wasn’t yet alive during the assassinations of President Kennedy, Malcolm X or Medgar Evers.

And I was far too young to remember the assassinations in 1968 of Robert F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. and the ensuing riots that occurred afterwards in inner cities all around the country. Back then, the culture war was still in its infancy, and America was still a country that overwhelmingly believed in God, Family and Country – no matter where your personal beliefs fell on the political spectrum. God, Family and Country were the three bedrock principles that a melting pot of diverse people depended on to keep our society cohesive and orderly.

Today, those bedrock principles have been jackhammered by activist courts, the so called “woke” generation who sadly have been indoctrinated in their public schools and colleges by the 1960’s culture warriors, and by the Democrat(ic) Party which long ago sold out America and their principles for political power. I firmly believe the obliteration of God, Family and Country has resulted in the deep divisions we currently see in our country. Read more…

Related:

Black and Red Show featuring RedState.com’s four African American contributors: Editor at Large Kira Davis, Jeff Charles, Chris Arps and Lenny McAllister.

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Tags: Uncategorized

Video: Non Citizens Unwittingly Being Added to Voter Rolls

May 21st, 2020 by editor ·

J. Christian Adams, President and General Counsel of the Public Interest Legal Foundation and founder of the Election Law Center shares how non citizens are being added to the voter rolls without their knowledge.  He participated in the Americans for Citizen Voting town hall with Jalesia “Jasha” McQueen is an Americans for Citizen Voting board member. Jasha is of Hispanic descent and is an immigration attorney and owner of McQueen Law LLC. Republican Mark Meuser ran for California secretary of state in 2018. He is a practicing election law attorney and a former chief of staff for a Missouri state senator. ACV advocates against the growing movement around the nation to allow green card holders to vote in school board and some municipal elections. Our mission is to place on ballots in all fifty states, a constitutional amendment that states only American citizens can vote in our elections.

Related:

Do Immigrants Think They Should be able to Vote in the USA?

Eyewitness Accounts of Non Citizens Voting & Registering to Vote

State Refuses to Release the Number of Non Citizens on Voting Roll

Video: “Allowing Non Citizens to Vote is Ridiculous”

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Tags: Decision 2020 · Videos · Voter Fraud

RedState.com: “My Exclusive Interview With Self Described ‘Trumpicrat” Rod Blagojevich”

May 20th, 2020 by MarkTwain ·

AP featured image

Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich tries to get into his house as he arrives home in Chicago on Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2020, after his release from Colorado prison late Tuesday. Blagojevich walked out of prison Tuesday after President Donald Trump cut short the 14-year prison sentence handed to the former Illinois governor for political corruption. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

St. Louis based Republican political consultant and radio personality Chris Arps interviewed former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich for RedState.com. In the interview, “Blago” discusses the similarities between his case and the cases of General Flynn and Roger Stone. He also talks about the pandemic and how he would have handled it as governor, plus, he talks about his eight years in a Colorado federal prison.

I had a chance last weekend to interview with my radio partner former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich who, after his sentence commutation last February from President Trump, now labels himself a “Trumpicrat” instead of Democrat. The far-ranging interview covers what he considers his railroading by the Obama Justice Department; the similarities between his case and the cases of General Flynn and Roger Stone; the Coronavirus pandemic and how he would have handled it; and the eight years he spent in a Colorado federal prison. Blagojevich still insists he did not commit the crime of trying to sell former President Obama’s Senate seat after Obama was elected President of the United States. Read more…

Related:

NPR: Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich Released Following Trump’s Commutation

Randles: “[Blagojevich] Is Sitting in Federal Prison for Attempting to do What Jay Nixon Has Seemingly Already Done”

Nixon Inherits Blagojevich’s Bag of Tricks

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Cleaning Up Clean Missouri

May 14th, 2020 by editor ·

If you recall in 2018, on the ballot there was an amendment to the Missouri Constitution known as Amendment 1 or “Clean Missouri”.  As per the Clean Missouri organization’s website the text was:

Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to:
• change process and criteria for redrawing state legislative districts during reapportionment;
• change limits on campaign contributions that candidates for state legislature can accept from individuals or entities;
• establish a limit on gifts that state legislators, and their employees, can accept from paid lobbyists;
• prohibit state legislators, and their employees, from serving as paid lobbyists for a period of time;
• prohibit political fundraising by candidates for or members of the state legislature on State property; and
• require legislative records and proceedings to be open to the public?
State governmental entities estimate annual operating costs may increase by $189,000. Local governmental entities expect no fiscal impact.

There is a lot in this amendment.  In fact it even went before the courts because there were arguments there were too many disparate topics in one amendment.  The State Supreme court didn’t find that a problem.

Most would have little to no problem with the prohibition of political fundraising by candidates or members of the state legislature on State property.  The changes mandated with the changing of limits on campaign contributions, gifts and the waiting period of lobbying was not significantly different then existing legislation.

While on the surface it sounds good that legislative records and proceedings were to be open to the public, what most people don’t realize is that means if you contact your state legislature because you need help, and that assistance is not necessarily what you want your friends and neighbors to know,…..well too bad….it is now open and available to the public. This has concerned some lawmakers:

Some lawmakers have made statements that constituents personal information communicated to them will become public record.  Rademan Miller says further clarification of the “Sunshine Law” will determine if such a contention is true. “I think it’s a gray area with the plain reading of the sunshine law,” Rademan Miller said. “There are exemptions there, but there’s definitely not like a blanket provision that provides an exemption for all constituent correspondence.

The most controversial section is the redrawing of legislative districts.  Before amendment 1 became law:

Under the previous system, commissions appointed by party committees and the governor drew the new districts. Republicans and Democrats got an equal number of seats on the commissions, which were typically made up of lobbyists, political consultants and elected officials. If the commissions failed to approve new maps, the state Supreme Court appointed six appellate judges to draw new lines.

Now with amendment 1:

Clean Missouri requires a new nonpartisan state demographer to draft maps for state House and Senate districts, with a goal of “partisan fairness” and “competitiveness” as determined by statistical measurements using the results of previous elections. Districts also must be contiguous and limit splits among counties and cities. The maps will be submitted to existing bipartisan commissions for approval.

Key differences being a nonpartisan state demographer (appointed by the State Auditor) with a goal of “partisan fairness”.  So the expectation is a partisan person will find someone nonpartisan that will create nonpartisan districts?  Sounds like a recipe for disaster to us.  Apparently there are folks on both sides of the aisle that agree.

“I fear — and I not only fear, I believe — that it’s likely this is going to disenfranchise African-American voters in St. Louis and Kansas City,” said Sen. Bob Onder, a Republican from St. Charles County.

“There are definitely concerns in the caucus that the way it was written could create long, spaghetti string districts and dilute the black vote at a time when we have historic black representation in the House,” said Rep. Steve Roberts, a St. Louis Democrat and chairman of the Black Caucus.

We are in the final week of a crazy pandemic impacted legislative session and there is a fight in Jefferson City to put forth an adjusted amendment before the people.  Rep Dean Plocher (R-Des Peres) sponsored a measure to address the legislative redistricting process.  He has some bi-partisan support from an unusual place.

“Missourians should have a choice,” Plocher said. “Communities must be kept together.”

The proposal, which previously had been approved in the Senate, was endorsed by the House on a 98-58 vote.

Rep. Maria Chappelle-Nadal, D-University City, joined Republicans in voting for the measure, saying she is concerned Clean Missouri would make it harder for African Americans to win seats in the Legislature. “I am unwilling to forego black political power,” Chappelle-Nadal said. “We’re talking about the representation of our communities.”

The senate bill is SJR38 and the house bill is HJR48. What happens next will be interesting.

Related:

Video: MOGOP’s Sam Cooper Says “Clean Missouri” Is A Dirty Deal

 

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Tags: Decision 2020

Update To “Show Me The Money”

May 14th, 2020 by editor ·

If you recall yesterday, your intrepid editors reviewed the St Louis County Covid19 expenditures website.  We figured if the Chair of the County Council didn’t want it reviewed then clearly someone should look into things.  We found it rather odd that the county was paying a hotel and reached out to the county for some answers.  Miracle of all miracles we received a response.

Thank you for your question. The County has secured space in a hotel that is used by first responders, the general public, and unhoused clients of the Department of Human Services.  All occupants in the hotel are quarantined pending a COVID test result or isolated after a positive result because they are unable to isolate at home.  No one is allowed to stay once a negative result has been determined, keeping the facility as “COVID only” and within the parameters of the federal Stafford and CARES acts. The specific transaction you have identified is in the “commitments” section of our transparency portal – it is a change to the purchase order with the hotel.  To-date, spending for this purpose is $596,432.61.

Paul Kreidler

Director of Performance Management & Budget

We thank Mr Kreidler for the prompt response.  I wonder if anyone knew if they couldn’t isolate at home then the county would pay for them to isolate at a hotel.

 

Related:

Show Me The Money….

Why On Earth Would We Need Oversight In St Louis County?!?

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Tags: Corona Virus

Do Immigrants Think They Should be able to Vote in the USA?

May 14th, 2020 by editor ·

Jalesia “Jasha” McQueen is an Americans for Citizen Voting board member. Jasha is of Hispanic descent and is an immigration attorney and owner of McQueen Law LLC. She shares during the ACV townhall what she has heard from legal immigrants about whether they should be able to vote in US elections.

Click here to watch the entire town hall.

Related:

Eyewitness Accounts of Non Citizens Voting & Registering to Vote

State Refuses to Release the Number of Non Citizens on Voting Roll

Video: “Allowing Non Citizens to Vote is Ridiculous”

Congressman: “What’s Wrong With Allowing Illegal Aliens to Vote?”

 

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Tags: Decision 2020 · Voter Fraud

Show Me The Money….

May 13th, 2020 by editor ·

As a follow up to an earlier article, your intrepid editors have been reviewing St Louis County’s COVID-19 expenditures website.

Most of the rest of them make sense….medical screening, hand soap, safety screening, telephones, janitorial supplies, blue painters tape, emergency thermometers, print services, computer equipment, webex, emergency masks, lab equipment, emergency cleaning, building permit, inmate mattresses, Covid-19 screeners, electrical work, emergency body bags, language access multicultural people, tractor trailer, emergency tables for mass casualties, majestic bleach (nothing but the best), trash bags, portable toilet(s), alcohol wipes, basket truck, toilet tissue, cube trucks, emergency bins for mass casual (guessing that is actually casualties), shelving for refrigerator, funnels, emergency ambulance,

Donations I guess…..or hope.

Loaves and fishes – $62,480

This is a little interesting

  • Department: PUBLIC HEALTH – COMM DISEASE CONTROL SVCS
  • Item and Comment: OTHER PERSONAL SERVICES – EMERGENCY CONTRACT FOR CALL CE
  • Vendor: UNITED WAY OF GREATER ST LOUIS
  • Date: 4/16/2020
  • Status: COMMITMENT
  • Transaction Description: PO Entry
  • Amount: $50,000

Is St. Louis County paying the United Way for a Call Center?

A couple have us flummoxed.

  • Department: POLICE – DIVISION OF PATROL
  • Item and Comment: OTHER PERSONAL SERVICES – INCREASE PER CO 2020
  • Vendor: HAWTHORN SUITES BY WYNDHAM ST LOUIS
  • Date: 5/6/2020
  • Status: COMMITMENT
  • Transaction Description: Purchase Order Maintenance
  • Amount: $259,383
  • Department: POLICE – DIVISION OF PATROL
  • Item and Comment: OTHER PERSONAL SERVICES – EMERGENCY COVID-19 HOTEL
  • Vendor: HAWTHORN SUITES BY WYNDHAM ST LOUIS
  • Date: 4/7/2020
  • Status: EXPENDITURE
  • Transaction Description: AP Invoice Posting
  • Amount: $31,000

Emergency COVID-19 Hotel?  There is a hotel designated as an overflow facility but it is a Quality Inn.

Or maybe not

  • Department: POLICE – DIVISION OF PATROL
  • Item and Comment: OTHER PERSONAL SERVICES – EMERGENCY COVID-19 HOTEL 2020
  • Vendor: HAWTHORN SUITES BY WYNDHAM ST LOUIS
  • Date: 4/7/2020
  • Status: COMMITMENT
  • Transaction Description: PO Liquidation
  • Amount: $-31,000

We wrote it off the books or received a refund.

  • Department: POLICE – DIVISION OF PATROL
  • Item and Comment: OTHER PERSONAL SERVICES – EMERGENCY COVID-19 HOTEL
  • Vendor: HAWTHORN SUITES BY WYNDHAM ST LOUIS
  • Date: 4/20/2020
  • Status: EXPENDITURE
  • Transaction Description: AP Invoice Posting
  • Amount: $31,000

Again….or maybe not

  • Department: POLICE – DIVISION OF PATROL
  • Item and Comment: OTHER PERSONAL SERVICES – EMERGENCY COVID-19 HOTEL 2020
  • Vendor: HAWTHORN SUITES BY WYNDHAM ST LOUIS
  • Date: 4/20/2020
  • Status: COMMITMENT
  • Transaction Description: PO Liquidation
  • Amount: $-31,000

Again taking it off the books

  • Department: NOT YET ASSIGNED – NOT YET ASSIGNED
  • Item and Comment: SPECIAL PROGRAM FUNDING – SMALL BUSINESS RELIEF PROGRAM
  • Vendor: TO BE DETERMINED
  • Date: 4/30/2020
  • Status: COMMITMENT
  • Transaction Description: Manual Entry
  • Amount: $17,500,000

Why don’t we have the Small Business Relief Program worked through…..we don’t even know what department will be running it?!?!?  It has been almost two weeks.  Remember this is an emergency and we need to pass the money.

It is fascinating how much money is spent on COVID-19 office supplies.  I hope they are keeping track of that.  It appears there is at least some checking since some of it is taken off the books too.  Makes you wonder though if anyone is really keeping track or did a bunch of people just get the company cards and are buying all the things they’ve always wanted.

We have an email in to the email address provided asking about the hotels.  We will let you know if we learn more.

Related:

Why On Earth Would We Need Oversight In St Louis County?!?

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Tags: Corona Virus · Decision 2020

Eyewitness Accounts of Non Citizens Voting & Registering to Vote

May 13th, 2020 by editor ·

Republican Mark Meuser ran for California secretary of state in 2018. He is a practicing election law attorney and a former chief of staff for a Missouri state senator. Marc tells a sad example of how an eagerness to register voters by the California Department of Motor Vehicles leads to a green card holders deportation.

Click here to watch the entire town hall.

Related:

State Refuses to Release the Number of Non Citizens on Voting Roll

Video: “Allowing Non Citizens to Vote is Ridiculous”

Congressman: “What’s Wrong With Allowing Illegal Aliens to Vote?”

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Tags: Decision 2020 · Videos · Voter Fraud

Keeping A List And Checking it Twice?

May 13th, 2020 by editor ·

On April 29th, 2020 Mayor Quinton Lucas of Kansas City announced his 10-10-10 plan for reopening Kansas City.

It would start midnight May 6th with some non-essential businesses that aren’t open to the public being allowed to bring in their employees.  Businesses that are open to the public must follow the 10-10-10 plan.

Limit customers to 10% of building occupancy or 10 people (whichever is larger)

Record the name, contact information and times of any customer that is in the the business for more than 10 minutes.

Religious gatherings like weddings, church services and funerals can resume with 10 people inside a location and 50 people outside, as long as social distancing is maintained and they keep the names and contact information of attendees.

Wait….what?  Now you want a record of who is attending a church service?

By May 5th, 2020 Mayor Lucas had clarified the church requirement:

“On all of the rules, we do have the final requirement which relates to contact tracing,” Lucas said. “That was that if you are a salon that keeps appointments, you should hang on to those. If you’re a restaurant that keeps reservations, when you open in a few weeks, hang on to those, and something’s been discussed a lot. If you’re an event, a religious institution that has people check in and sign in all the time, you should keep those.” The reasoning, according to Lucas, isn’t to “keep big lists,” but so that the organizations can contact people to make them aware of a coronavirus outbreak, should one occur. “That’s what it’s all about,” Lucas said. “It’s a voluntary requirement.”

This makes complete sense for a salon with appointments or a restaurant that keeps reservations.  It isn’t an unreasonable hardship, and truth be told, they probably have that information for an extended period of time anyway.  What religious institution has people check in and/or sign in?  How long do you think it will take before Mayor Lucas starts asking for the attendees of a religious institution under the guise of covid-19 contract tracing?

Oh and don’t forget: Lucas said if someone wants to report a business not following these guidelines they should call the city 311 line.

“They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” Benjamin Franklin, Memoirs of the life & writings of Benjamin Franklin.

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Tags: Corona Virus · Decision 2020 · Kansas City

Making a Big Pay Day off of Pay Day Loan Companies?

May 12th, 2020 by editor ·

Source: Amy Livingston

What do St Louis City, Kansas City, Springfield and Liberty all have in common?  They all have annual licensing fees ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 on “short-term lending establishments”.  Interestingly enough on the same day that the Springfield City Council voted to start imposing the fees Curtis Trent (R – Springfield) added language to a bank bill stating

“local governments are not allowed to impose fees on “traditional installment loan lenders” if the fees are not required of other financial institutions regulated by the state, including chartered banks.”

While Trent states this was not intended to protect Pay Day Loan companies specifically and “traditional installment loan lenders” are different.  Advocates for the ordinance say

“that while a payday loan wouldn’t normally count as a “traditional installment loan,” many payday lending institutions also have a traditional installment loan license. Rather than being two separate businesses, the multiple licenses could allow such a lender to claim the fee imposed because of their payday loans is disallowed by Trent’s measure since they are also a traditional installment loan lender.”

Brian Fogle, the CEO of the Community Foundation of the Ozarks and a co-chair of a Springfield city committee appointed to study payday loans stated

“A lot of these payday lenders are shifting to this type of product,” he said.

Unlike payday loans, which must be less than $500 and are supposed to be paid back within weeks, installment loans can be larger and are paid back over four or more months. They can still carry triple-digit annual interest and create similar problems for borrowers, though.

He allowed that expanding those offerings could have some positive effect for consumers because the loans are paid off gradually.”

Hmmmm…..maybe they aren’t as bad as we thought.

In the meanwhile Crystal Quade (D-Springfield) the House Minority Leader stated

“People use the payday lending industry when they are in desperation and obviously, there’s a lot of that right now,” she said. “This will be harmful.”

So is it better that people are desperate just don’t get the money they need?

Their wish to shut the Pay Day Loan companies down may still come true as at least Payday Money Centers is suing for access to the small business lending program.  In fact the pay day lending industry states that it is being unfairly excluded from the small-business lending program.  Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO) was one of the authors of a letter to Secretary Mnuchin and Administrator Carranza pleading their case.  Surprised Bought & Sold Lacy Clay didn’t sign on.

 

Related:

Rep. Cleaver Investigates Firm Tied To Rep. Clay’s Favorite (Pay Day Loan) Industry

National Media Follows Up On MO Blogger’s Expose of Rep. Clay & Loan Sharks

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Tags: MO Legislature · Rep. Lacy Clay