You know how much I respect your skills and talents. Today, I’m asking you to share them with me and your fellow readers.

Please send me your self-reliance tips (no politics, please!)

You all know by now that I am being harried off the internet for sharing conservative viewpoints from leading writers. While I will continue to do this, I am only going to respond to the effects of the damaging progressive policies being implemented in Washington D.C. To rail against the actual policies will exhaust and frustrate us all, as well as ensure that we are kicked off this hosting platform, lose the last of our advertisers and get blocked by the big email providers.

So, I am turning to you! You homemakers, gardeners, hobbyists, hunters, survivalists, car enthusiasts, parents, fisherfolk, experts, military experts, marksmen, inventors, bakers, heritage skill experts, — all of you with cool things to share.

I would like to ask you to send me your recipes, instructions, guides, photos, step-by-step instructions, and videos*. Please email them to me at [email protected] . Remember NO POLITICS. This is my desperate attempt to get us back to our self-reliant roots and swamp the site with preparedness and quality of life improvements. Please know that I am the only person involved at SRC and I can’t pay but I would truly love to share your passions. (Please send only your original material. Copyright and intellectual property lawyers trawl these sites to sue people who use other people’s work.)

*If you make a video, I suggest you post it direct to rather than on this site, as you can get paid when people view them. Let me know what you have posted and if I share it with my readers and viewers that means more eyeballs and more money earned for you!

Best Cartridge for Concealed Carry?

When it comes to concealed carry, there are a lot of different handgun and caliber options. And if you look around anywhere on YouTube or the Internet, you’ll find A LOT of different opinions as to which caliber is the best choice for your personal defense handgun.

In this video, Chris and Dave take a deep dive into what are their favorite calibers for concealed carry. Though this far from a comprehensive list, there’s no doubt that all of these suggested calibers will be more than capable of defending your life should the worst happen.

If you’re keeping it under wraps, make sure to check out these calibers for your next concealed carry pistol.

Libs of TikTok creator makes selfless call to protect kids from groomers and foreign propaganda 

“TikTok is a weapon being used to groom our kids,” says Chaya Raichik, creator of the popular Twitter account Libs of TikTok. 

Raichik joined lawmakers, policy experts, and parents Thursday outside the U.S. Capitol for a rally calling for Chinese-owned TikTok to be banned in America.  

“Every single day in America, our children are under attack,” Raichik said, explaining that she has spent the past two years exposing content on TikTok that targets young people with pro-transgender messages. 

Raichik’s Libs of TikTok account on Twitter republishes videos and other material from the Left.

“TikTok is designed to attract our impressionable youth, and groomers and predators know this and are using it to their advantage,” Raichik said while wearing a “Ban TikTok” T-shirt.  

“TikTok is a weapon being used to groom our kids,” says Chaya Raichik, creator of the popular Twitter account Libs of TikTok. 

Raichik joined lawmakers, policy experts, and parents Thursday outside the U.S. Capitol for a rally calling for Chinese-owned TikTok to be banned in America.  

“Every single day in America, our children are under attack,” Raichik said, explaining that she has spent the past two years exposing content on TikTok that targets young people with pro-transgender messages. 

Raichik’s Libs of TikTok account on Twitter republishes videos and other material from the Left.

“TikTok is designed to attract our impressionable youth, and groomers and predators know this and are using it to their advantage,” Raichik said while wearing a “Ban TikTok” T-shirt.  

Example from Libs of TikTok

“Through TikTok, trans activists have a platform to groom children by telling them to cut off contact with their parents and offering them guidance on gender transition using harmful information,” Raichik said.  

The “Ban TikTok” rally took place while TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew testifiedbefore the House Energy and Commerce Committee and answered lawmakers’ questions regarding security concerns over the Chinese-owned app.  

Calls to ban the social media platform center around not only its harmful content, but concerns over the Chinese Communist Party’s access to personal user data. TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, is headquartered in Beijing and is subject to Chinese law requiring companies to make data available to the government. 

“China is the top national security threat to the United States, and they’re laughing at us,” Rep. Mary Miller, R-Ill., said during the rally, adding that China is “laughing at us while they use TikTok to destroy America’s youth with the support of [President] Joe Biden and the radical Left.”  

In China, officials limit use of the Chinese version of the app to 40 minutes a day for children under age 14. But meanwhile, “American children waste countless hours a day … on videos fed by the Chinese Communist Party,” Rep. Troy Nehls, R-Texas, said at the rally.  

The fact that China is limiting the app’s use by children should be “the first indicator that TikTok is not safe and has no place has no place in our country,” Nehls said.  

Example from Libs of TikTok

About 150 million Americans have TikTok accounts, according to the social media platform. More than 30 states and the federal government have moved to ban TikTok from government-issued devises, citing security concerns.  

Examples from Libs of TikTok

Fully 67% of American teens are on TikTok, Kara Frederick, director of The Heritage Foundation’s Tech Policy Center, said at the rally. (The Daily Signal is Heritage’s multimedia news organization.)

“Sixteen percent of American teens said they are on TikTok almost constantly,” Frederick said. “Thirty percent of parents claim that their pre-teens, 9- to 11-year-olds, use this platform.” 

“The next phase of teen despair, of children’s despair, is here and it’s delivered by a Chinese algorithm. We have to ban it today,” Frederick said.  

Although calls continue for banning TikTok nationwide, Tiffany Justice, founder of Mom’s for Liberty, says parents can begin by banning TikTok in their homes today.  

“The more of us that say no to TikTok in our homes with our kids, the better off the future of our country will be,” Justice said.  

She went to put AOC straight

Support came in strong!

Asian Voters Have Democrats Worried after Midterm Shift Toward the GOP

The marked shifts of Black and Hispanic voters away from the Democratic Party is something Americans for Limited Government Foundation (ALGF) has covered in depth, but new data shows Asian Americans are also abandoning the left. 

The New York Times recently published analysis of voter turnout in the 2022 gubernatorial election in New York and showed New York City neighborhoods with a heavy Asian population shifted toward the GOP by 23 points compared to 2018. The Times analysis showed, it was the “largest electoral shift in Asian neighborhoods in the period from 2006 to 2022.”  

Nationwide, Asian Americans saw a 17-percentage point shift toward the GOP between 2018 and 2022, according to exit polls. In 2018 Democrats won Asian voters 77% to 23%, while in 2022 that margin shrank to 58% to 40%. 

Three years ago, President Biden underperformed Hillary Clinton with Asian Americans by four percentage points nationwide, while Trump gained 7 points compared to 2016. 

In California, which boasts the largest Asian American population in the US at around half a million people, Trump gained 5 points with Asian voters in 2020 over his 2016 numbers.

In Texas, with boasts about 1.2 million Asian Americans, Biden saw a nine-point decline compared to Clinton among Asian voters. Clinton won Asian Americans 72% to Trump’s 26% in 2016, but Biden won just 63% in 2020. Trump earned 30% in 2020, a four-point gain since 2016.

ALGF’s analysis of the 2021 Virginia governor’s race showed Asian and Hispanic voters, as well as lower income voters, were heavily represented in Fairfax County precincts that became more Republican in 2021.

We analyzed the precincts that shifted more toward Gov. Glenn Youngkin compared to 2017 and showed Fairfax County precincts that shifted away from the Democrat candidate in 2021 the most had an average Asian population of 24.9%. 

ALGF’s First Generation research also shows Southeast and Central Asians are open to conservative messages and a significant majority identify as moderates or independents. Among South/Southeast Asians, 50% of respondents in our survey identified themselves as moderates on economic issues, while 25% identified as liberal and 24% identified as conservative. Those numbers were even more favorable among Central Asians, with 55% identifying as conservative on economic issues, 27% identifying as moderate, and just 17% identifying as liberal.

We also found 15% of South/Southeast Asians identify as Republicans, and 54% identify as Independents, while 27% identify as Democrats. Among Central Asians, a full 44% identified as Republican, 37% identified as Independent, and just 19% identified as Democrats.

With the right message, Republicans have a significant opportunity to grow their share of the Asian vote in the midterms, particularly with careful attention to the diverse range of views and priorities of various Asian groups. 

Manzanita Miller is an associate analyst at Americans for Limited Government Research Foundation.

To view online:

Why did the GOP let this anti-parent rule creep into the General Bill?

House GOP bill would let boys go into girls’ bathrooms and locker rooms (and vice versa) in elementary and middle schools with their parents’ permission—whether states like it or not.

Title IV of H.R. 5, “parental rights” legislation that purports to address the issue of minor gender transition taking place in public schools, where children are being transitioned from one gender to another—by changing a child’s gender, pronouns or name on school forms, or by allowing a child to use the opposite sex’s locker rooms and bathrooms—actually allows it to take place with the parents’ permission, whether states agree or not.

The section states, “As a condition of receiving Federal funds, any elementary school … or school that consists of only middle grades (as such term is defined in such section), that receives Federal funds shall be required to obtain parental consent before…  changing a minor child’s gender markers, pronouns, or preferred name on any school form; or … allowing a child to change the child’s sex-based accommodations, including locker rooms or bathrooms.”

The intent of this provision is to ensure that a school receiving federal funding cannot transition the gender of a child without the parents’ knowledge and consent. 

In Suffolk County, N.Y. one family is suing their school after a Port Jefferson teacher forced a 9-year-old girl to use male pronouns and to go by the name of “Leo,” causing the girl to experience suicidal thoughts. 

This part of the legislation does in fact address that by setting up a significant prohibition against the practice when it occurs without a parent’s consent, which absolutely should not be occurring.

But on the other side of the issue, what the provision also does is to authorize parents to grant consent for schools to transition the gender of a child as an official matter on school forms and, critically, to provide accommodations for the child including access to the opposite sex’s bathrooms and locker rooms—whether other parents with children attending the school agree to the practice or not—as a matter of federal law.

Making matters worse, because it would be a federal law, if adopted by both the House and Senate and signed by President Joe Biden, it could potentially preempt any state laws that might seek to completely prohibit schools from accommodating minor gender transition in any way. What about federalism? Why should a federal education bill potentially impose such a requirement on states?

Mind you, this is the Republican bill on minor gender transition as it takes place in public schools nationwide, and it actually allows the practice to continue—with parents’ permission—whether Republican-led states like it or not. Why would they do that?

In other words, if there is to be national legislation about this issue, foregoing any states’ rights considerations, why aren’t they just banning it by saying no funds for schools that accommodate minor gender transition, especially in elementary and middle schools? Instead, they’re saying it’s okay with parental consent. Is it?

That, even though Republicans are overwhelmingly opposed to allowing schools to teach about gender identity in schools—at all. A YouGov poll from March 2022 found that Republicans oppose gender identity curricula 65 percent to 21 percent. Independents are opposed 45 percent to 31 percent. Democrats favor it 69 percent to 17 percent. U.S. adults were split, with 41 percent opposed and 40 percent in favor. 

On allowing student athletes to compete against the opposite sex on sports teams, Republicans are opposed 77 percent to 12 percent. Independents are opposed 57 percent to 22 percent. And Democrats are in favor, 53 percent to 24 percent. U.S. adults overall are opposed 49 percent to 29 percent.

On the issue of allowing the use of puberty blockers, Republicans are opposed 72 percent to 12 percent. So are independents, 46 percent to 24 percent. Democrats are in favor, 49 percent to 24 percent. Overall, U.S. adults are opposed, 44 percent to 29 percent. 

Meaning, if it were a national referendum, the United States might simply ban the practice of minor gender transition altogether. It’s not even close. 

So, why would the Republican legislation on this matter require public schools nationwide to accommodate minor gender transition officially on school forms and to permit children to use the opposite sex’s bathrooms and locker rooms with parental consent? 

If Republicans don’t want gender identity taught in classrooms, why would they want it taught in school bathrooms and locker rooms? It is rather inexplicable—and puts the power in the hands of the most radical parents who are pushing this.

And on the issue of requiring schools to notify a parent if a child requests to use different pronouns at a school, Republicans are in favor, 63 percent to 22 percent. Independents are in favor, 50 percent to 19 percent. Democrats are in favor, 46 percent to 31 percent. And U.S. adults are in favor, 52 percent to 24 percent.

On this count, the legislation would also establish a parental “right to know” if a school allows employees to attempt to transition the gender of a child on school forms and by allowing children to use the bathrooms and locker rooms of the opposite sex by posting that information the school’s website.

That, coupled with the prohibition on child gender transition without parental consent appears to be the part that the legislation does address, by carving out some sort of “reasonable” middle ground by providing for some parental notification when this is occurring. But why didn’t it go further? With Democrats completely opposed to the bill, its prospects in the Senate are dim anyway, let alone getting signed into law. 

H.R. 5 goes way too far. As a federal law it would preempt states that might wish to prohibit minor general transition at schools altogether, especially in elementary and middle schools. Why would the GOP-led House—which has said it wants to let states control education—do that?

Robert Romano is the Vice President of Public Policy at Americans for Limited Government. 

To view online:

Congressman asks THE 🔥🔥☄️question about Hunter Biden’s firearm

Tom Tiffany on fire here as he points out the two-tiered standard of justice in America. If you or I lied on our Form 4473 we’d do 15 years in the slammer. Elite Hunter doesn’t even get a slap on the wrist.

Environment news: From Lake Tahoe to depleted uranium.

Cue pivot from Climate Change to Climate Chaos as South Lake Tahoe freezes over for the first time since the early 1990s. That’s not a long time in climate terms so let’s not draw too many conclusions, right?

Happy penguins AND polar bears

No, we won’t starve because of climate change

But depleted uranium probably won’t help

The UK is sending shells containing depleted uranium to Ukraine for use against Russian tanks. Apparently depleted uranium hardens steel. Although the full extent of soil contamination to the fertile Ukraine farming region is unknown, there are concerns that the conflict will cause long-lasting damage to the country’s agricultural productivityUkraine is one of the world’s most important producers and exporters of cereals and oilseeds, including corn, wheat, barley and sunflower oil. The widespread pollution caused by the conflict also threatens local wildlife and the health of communities who are at risk of eating contaminated crops.

The UN and Ukraine and many others are concerned that depleted uranium in the soil and atmosphere will cause cancer in locals and babies. They should take comfort from the CDC who are utterly dismissive of the threat from uranium. Check this out. They don’t see a problem here! Move along!

Although the Military is a little more concerned

Even the Saudis mock Biden (they nail Kamala, though!)

About a year ago this Saudi show launched its impersonations of Joe and Kamala. (Actually making Kamala more on the ball than she is in real life, lol.). Sleepy Joe is all over the place in this skit and Kamala has to help him out – a lot.

Possibly signaling a fracture in Saudi-US relations, the team is back. This time Joe is wandering aimlessly and falling up the air steps to Air Force One. We have to hand it to them, they nailed the Kamala character.

The Middle East Broadcasting Center, known as MBC Group is now based in Rhiyad. It is nominally owned by Waleed bin Ibrahim Al Ibrahim, a Saudi Arabian businessman, and its founder and chairman. However, it appears that fifty percent of the MBC is owned by King Fahd’s youngest son and his nephew, Abdulaziz bin Fahd. It is further reported that Prince Abdulaziz controls the ideology of the MBC Channels, including Al Arabiya, its flagship station. It’s worth noting that the organization moved from Dubai in 2018 following an unfortunate series of events a year earlier.

From Wikipedia: In 2017, a number of owners and board members of MBC were summoned to Riyadh where they were arrested, accused of corruption, and locked in the Ritz-Carlton. These moves came following years of the Saudi Crown Prince attempting to purchase the media company. After 83 days the company’s chief owner Waleed al-Ibrahim was released.

How They Convinced Trump to Lock Down

white house
Photo by Aaron Kittredge on

An enduring mystery for three years is how Donald Trump came to be the president who shut down American society for what turned out to be a manageable respiratory virus, setting off an unspeakable crisis with waves of destructive fallout that continue to this day. 

Let’s review the timeline and offer some well-founded speculations about what happened. 

On March 9, 2020, Trump was still of the opinion that the virus could be handled by normal means.

What changed? Deborah Birx reports in her book that Trump had a friend die in a New York hospital and this is what shifted his opinion. Jared Kushner reports that he simply listened to reason. Mike Pence says he was persuaded that his staff would respect him more. No question (and based on all existing reports) that he found himself surrounded by “trusted advisors” amounting to about 5 or so people (including Mike Pence and Pfizer board member Scott Gottlieb)

It was only a week later when Trump issued the edict to close all “indoor and outdoor venues where people congregate,” initiating the biggest regime change in US history that flew in the face of all rights and liberties Americans had previously taken for granted. It was the ultimate in political triangulation: as John F. Kennedy cut taxes, Nixon opened China, and Clinton reformed welfare, Trump shut down the economy he promised to revive. This action confounded critics on all sides. 

A month later, Trump said his decision to have “turned off” the economy saved millions of lives, later even claiming to have savedbillions. He has yet to admit error. 

Even as late as June 23rd of that year, Trump was demanding credit for having followed all of Fauci’s recommendations. Why do they love him and hate me, he wanted to know. 

Something about this story has never really added up. How could one person have been so persuaded by a handful of others such as Fauci, Birx, Pence, and Kushner and his friends? He surely had other sources of information – some other scenario or intelligence – that fed into his disastrous decision. 

In one version of events, his advisors simply pointed to the supposed success of Xi Jinping in enacting lockdowns in Wuhan, which the World Health Organization claimed had stopped infections and brought the virus under control. Perhaps his advisors flattered Trump with the observation that he is at least as great as the president of China so he should be bold and enact the same policies here. 

One problem with this scenario is timing. The Oval Office meetings that preceded his March 16, 2020, edict took place the weekend of the 14th and 15th, Friday and Saturday. It was already clear by the 11th that Trump was ready for lockdowns. This was the same day as Fauci’s deliberately misleading testimony to the House Oversight Committee in which he rattled the room with predictions of Hollywood-style carnage. 

On the 12th, Trump shut all travel from Europe, the UK, and Australia, causing huge human pile-ups at international airports. On the 13th, the Department of Health and Human Services issued a classified document that transferred control of pandemic policy from the CDC to the National Security Council and eventually the Department of Homeland Security. By the time that Trump met with Fauci and Birx in that legendary weekend, the country was already under quasi-martial law. 

Isolating the date in the trajectory here, it is apparent that whatever happened to change Trump occurred on March 10, 2020, the day after his Tweet saying there should be no shutdowns and two days before Fauci’s testimony. 

Policy was forged not by the public-health bureaucracies but by the national-security sector 

That something very likely revolves around the most substantial discovery we’ve made in three years of investigations. It was Debbie Lerman who first cracked the code: Covid policy was forged not by the public-health bureaucracies but by the national-security sector of the administrative state. She has further explained that this occurred because of two critical features of the response: 1) the belief that this virus came from a lab leak, and 2) the vaccine was the biosecurity countermeasure pushed by the same people as the fix. 

Knowing this, we gain greater insight into 1) why Trump changed his mind, 2) why he has never explained this momentous decision and otherwise completely avoids the topic, and 3) why it has been so unbearably difficult to find out any information about these mysterious few days other than the pablum served up in books designed to earn royalties for authors like Birx, Pence, and Kushner. 

Based on a number of second-hand reports, all available clues we have assembled, and the context of the times, the following scenario seems most likely. On March 10, and in response to Trump’s dismissive tweet the day before, some trusted sources within and around the National Security Council (Matthew Pottinger and Michael Callahan, for example), and probably involving some from military command and others, came to Trump to let him know a highly classified secret. 

Imagine a scene from Get Smart with the Cone of Silence, for example. These are the events in the life of statecraft that infuse powerful people with a sense of their personal awesomeness. The fate of all of society rests on their shoulders and the decisions they make at this point. Of course they are sworn to intense secrecy following the great reveal. 

The revelation was that the virus was not a textbook virus but something far more threatening and terrible. It came from a research lab in Wuhan. It might in fact be a bioweapon. This is why Xi had to do extreme things to protect his people. The US should do the same, they said, and there is a fix available too and it is being carefully guarded by the military. 

It seems that the virus had already been mapped in order to make a vaccine to protect the population. Thanks to 20 years of research on mRNA platforms, they told him,  this vaccine can be rolled out in months, not years. That means that Trump can lock down and distribute vaccines to save everyone from the China virus, all in time for the election. Doing this would not only assure his reelection but guarantee that he would go down in history as one of the greatest US presidents of all time. 

This meeting might only have lasted an hour or two – and might have included a parade of people with the highest-level security clearances – but it was enough to convince Trump. After all, he had battled China for two previous years, imposing tariffs and making all sorts of threats. It was easy to believe at that point that China might have initiated biological warfare as retaliation. That’s why he made the decision to use all the power of the presidency to push a lockdown under emergency rule. 

To be sure, the Constitution does not allow him to override the discretion of the states but with the weight of the office complete with enough funding and persuasion, he could make it happen. And thus did he make the fateful decision that not only wrecked his presidency but the country too, imposing harms that will last a generation. 

It only took a few weeks for Trump to become suspicious about what happened. For weeks and months, he toggled between believing that he was tricked and believing that he did the right thing. He had already approved another 30 days of lockdowns and even inveighed against Georgia and later Florida for opening. He went so far as to claim that no state could open without his approval. 

He did not fully change his mind until August, when Scott Atlas revealed the whole con to him. 

There is another fascinating feature to this entirely plausible scenario. Even as Trump’s advisors were telling him that this could be a bioweapon leaked from the lab in China, we had Anthony Fauci and his cronies going to great lengths to deny it was a lab leak (even if they believed that it was). This created an interesting situation. The NIH and those surrounding Fauci were publicly insisting that the virus was of zoonotic origin, even as Trump’s circle was telling the president that it should be regarded as a bioweapon. 

Fauci belonged to both camps, which suggests that Trump very likely knew of Fauci’s deception all along: the “noble lie” to protect the public from knowing the truth. Trump had to be fine with that. 

Gradually following the lockdown edicts and the takeover by the Department of Homeland Security, in cooperation with a very hostile CDC, Trump lost power and influence over his own government, which is why his later Tweets urging a reopening fell on deaf ears. To top it off, the vaccine failed to arrive in time for the election. This is because Fauci himself delayed the rollout until after the election, claiming that the trials were not racially diverse enough. Thus Trump’s gambit completely failed, despite all the promises of those around him that it was a guaranteed way to win reelection.

To be sure, this scenario cannot be proven because the entire event – certainly the most dramatic political move in at least a generation and one with unspeakable costs for the country – remains cloaked in secrecy. Not even Senator Rand Paul can get the information he needs because it remains classified. If anyone thinks the Biden approval of releasing documents will show what we need, that person is naive. Still, the above scenario fits all available facts and it is confirmed by second-hand reports from inside the White House. 

It’s enough for a great movie or a play of Shakespearean levels of tragedy. And to this day, none of the main players are speaking openly about it. 


Jeffrey A. Tucker is Founder and President of the Brownstone Institute. He is also Senior Economics Columnist for Epoch Times, author of 10 books, including Liberty or Lockdown, and thousands of articles in the scholarly and popular press. He speaks widely on topics of economics, technology, social philosophy, and culture. READ MORE

Climate vandal ticks off the wrong mayor – Swift justice results!

One minute you’re talking to camera…

…the next you’re superman

Fascinating fact about the border that the MSM is NOT reporting

According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, 4,366 Chinese nationals have been encountered illegally crossing the Southwest border in Fiscal Year 2023, which started on October 1, 2022. While they account for only 0.42 percent of the 1,029,953 illegal border crossings so far, they are of particular concern due to rising tensions between the U.S. and China’s Communist government and concerns about Chinese espionage. Back in January 2021, CBP encountered only 13 Chinese citizens at the Southwest border, but the numbers have been steadily increasing since then, with over a thousand Chinese nationals encountered in both January and February 2023.

Republican Congressman Tim Burchett has expressed concern that these Chinese nationals may be spying on Americans and reporting back to China, as research institutions, colleges, and universities in the U.S. have been infiltrated by the Communist Chinese. He argues that these individuals are not coming to work in low-skilled jobs but to engage in espionage activities. He also criticizes the Biden administration for denying that this is happening and for not acknowledging the potential threat it poses.

Many of the Chinese illegal border-crossers, along with thousands of people from other countries, are being released in the U.S. due to the lack of space in overcrowded border facilities. Burchett believes that this is a significant problem, and the processing center in Del Rio, Texas, alone is costing taxpayers $16 million a month just to process these individuals. He warns that if this issue is not addressed, it could lead to incidents with Taiwan and widespread unrest within the U.S.

This is Where Trump Gets Major GOP Primary Lead

Two recent polls could upset political assumptions about GOP primary voters going forward. While former President Trump maintains a double-digit lead over prospective GOP challenger Ron DeSantis in several national polls, Trump’s widest lead over DeSantis is with non-white voters. Trump also holds a substantial lead over DeSantis with lower-income voters who make under $50,000 a year and with younger voters under 50. 

The average of two recent polls by CNN/SSRS and Quinnipiac University shows Trump’s lead over DeSantis widens substantially among non-white Republicans, who make up a larger share of low-income voters than whites do. 

Trump is ahead of DeSantis by approximately 29 percentage points (55% to 26%) with voters of color but ahead by just one percentage point – and well within the margin of error – with white GOP primary voters.

Minority GOP primary voters are also more likely than whites to say it is more important for their GOP primary pick to share their values. By a two-to one margin minority GOP primary voters say it is more important for their GOP primary pick to share their values than to be “capable of beating Joe Biden.” A full 80% of minority GOP primary voters also say that it is “essential” that whoever is nominated for president in 2024 restores the policies of the Trump Administration. 

Lower income voters continue to be key Trump supporters, while higher income voters favor DeSantis in polls, but CNN’s data shows non-white Republicans are more likely to fall into the lower-income group. 

For instance, Trump leads DeSantis by 22 points among voters earning less than $50,000, but trails DeSantis by 13 points with those earning $50,000 or more. However, 45% of non-white Republicans fall into the group earning less than $50,000 while just 28% of White Republicans do. Race and class are both converging to create a block of working-class voters that skews heavily pro-Trump.

Young voters also favor Trump while older voters favor DeSantis, something Americans for Limited Government Foundation (ALGF) pointed out two weeks ago. Trump leads DeSantis by 18 percentage points with voters under 50, but trails DeSantis by 9 points for voters 50 to 64. 

The minority shift toward Trump is not new. Latinos in particular have seen a significant rise in Trump support in recent months, with YouGov survey data showing the share of Latinos who say Trump should run again is up 14 points since he left office going from 22% to 36% today. Meanwhile, just 28% of Latinos want a Biden re-run and a solid 57% say Biden should not run again. 

Looking back at the 2020 election, Black and Hispanic voters saw substantial shifts toward the right. Although Latinos still favored Biden in the 2020 presidential election, Trump’s share of the Hispanic vote rose ten percentage points from 28% in 2016 to 38% in 2020.  

Trump also netted 12% of Black Americans nationwide, up from 8% in 2016. His most substantial gain was among Black men, 18% of whom supported Trump in 2020 up from 13% in 2016. Though his share of the Black female vote was small, it doubled from 4% in 2016 to 8% in 2020.

Minority voters have still favored Democrats in recent elections, but non-college-educated minorities are beginning to move to the right much like non-college whites. According to exit polls, the Democratic Party’s share of the non-college minority vote dropped eleven points between 2008 and 2020. 

While Biden did win non-college minorities by 46 points in 2020, Trump increased his share of their vote by six points between 2016 and 2020. In 2016, Trump won 20% of the non-college minority vote and in 2020 he won 26%.  

Non-college minorities also moved eight points to the right between the 2018 and 2022 midterm elections. In the 2018 midterms Democrats won minorities without a college degree by 76% to 22%. In the 2022 midterms Democrats won this block by 68% to 28%. 

The midterms also showed a substantial shift toward the right among non-white men between 2018 and 2022. Democrats lost 21 points with Latino men between the two most recent midterm elections, going from winning them by 29 points in 2018 to 8 points in 2022.  

Democrats also lost 14 points with Latino women between 2018 and 2022. Democrats lost 11 points with Black men, who supported Democrats by 76 points in 2018 and 65 points in 2022. Black women supported Democrats by 7 points less last year as well. 

While education is growing among minorities, minorities without a college degree make up a substantial share of the electorate. In the 2022 midterms, minorities without a degree made up nearly a fifth of the electorate (18%) while those with one made up just 9%. 

As ALGF pointed out last month, early polling shows Trump leads DeSantis on issues central to Latino voters including economic issues and border security. By a greater than two-to-one margin, Americans say they trust Trump more than DeSantis to handle the economy, taxes and government spending, foreign policy, and immigration. 

Polls also show younger voters, who are more likely to fall into lower-income profiles largely prefer Trump to DeSantis. Over half of voters eighteen to twenty-nine (51%) have a very or somewhat favorable view of Trump, while just 43% have a very or somewhat favorable view of DeSantis. Voters over 65 are the opposite, with 37% saying they have a very or somewhat favorable view of Trump while 42% say they have a favorable view of DeSantis. 

In the Republican party, as well as in the Democrat party, class is becoming a more divisive variable than almost any other metric. Lower income and lower educated voters prefer the GOP regardless of race, and within the Republican Party these voters gravitate toward former President Trump’s populist platform over DeSantis’ more conventional GOP agenda. 

Manzanita Miller is an associate analyst at Americans for Limited Government Research Foundation.

To view online:

World scrambles to match Russia on hypersonic weapons

The Kinzhal (Dagger) hypersonic missile is claimed by Putin to fly at ten times the speed of sound.

Hypersonic weapons are a new class of weapons that are designed to travel at extremely high speeds, typically above Mach 5 (five times the speed of sound) or faster. These weapons use advanced propulsion systems, such as scramjet engines, to achieve these speeds and are often designed to be highly maneuverable.

One of the key advantages of hypersonic weapons is their speed, which makes them extremely difficult to detect and intercept using traditional missile defense systems. This speed also allows them to strike targets quickly, reducing the time for an enemy to respond or launch countermeasures.

Hypersonic weapons can be used for a variety of purposes, including strategic strikes against enemy targets, precision strikes against high-value targets, and even as a deterrent against potential adversaries.

However, the development and deployment of hypersonic weapons also pose significant technical and strategic challenges, including the need for advanced materials that can withstand the extreme heat and pressure generated by hypersonic flight, as well as the potential for destabilizing arms races between nations.

In 2018, Vladimir Putin unveiled Russia’s new hypersonic weapons. Many in the West initially dismissed Putin’s claims as a bluff, but it is now known that Russia has deployment-ready hypersonic missiles, including the Zircon, Kinzhal, and Avantguard.

According to experts, hypersonic precision missiles are a game-changer in warfare, rendering traditional military technologies such as tanks and air-force obsolete. The Anti-Ballistic (ABM) batteries set up by the US on the Poland-Romania axis and by Russia on the North Pole-Kaliningrad-Crimea-Syria axis are currently the main military front in global conflict. However, these defensive systems are only effective against missiles flying at speeds up to mach 3.5.

The Kinzhal missile, which can fly at speeds of mach 12 to mach 15, is particularly significant as it turns mighty aircraft carrier strike groups into sitting ducks. The Kinzhal can fly at altitudes of between 20 and 40 km and has a maximum range of 2,000 km. When it is above the target, it dives perpendicularly and accelerates to 15 mach, gathering enormous kinetic energy in addition to its explosive payload.

The Kinzhal was specifically designed to destroy aircraft carrier strike groups and can easily cut through an aircraft carrier, as demonstrated by its ability to destroy a warehouse built to withstand a nuclear strike in Ukraine. The first Kinzhal strike, delivered one month after the beginning of hostilities in Ukraine, was perhaps the most significant: Russian forces targeted a large weapons depot in Ukraine which had been built during the Soviet times to withstand a nuclear strike. It was buried 170 meters (over 500 ft) underground and protected by several layers of armored concrete. 

The Kinzhal flies at altitudes of between 20 and 40 km, with a maximum range of 2,000 km. When above target, it dives perpendicularly and accelerates to 15 mach, generating enormous kinetic energy in addition to its explosive payload. That first strike with a single Kinzhal missile destroyed Ukraine’s nuke-proof underground weapons depot. This was a message for the west. 

This weapon is a clear message to the West that Russia is capable of sinking all their carriers.

There is a fascinating article here, In it, the author, Alex Krainer, says:

Russia has the capacity to build about 200 Kinzhals per year and now has means of delivering Kinzhal and Zircon missiles anywhere from aircraft, ships and submarines. In addition to destroying aircraft carriers, they can also destroy NATOs ABM missile sites. In a nutshell, Russia is now a clear winner of the 21st century arms race. 

It could take the western powers 10 years or longer to catch up and until then, the only way to avoid losing the war is to either concede defeat and accept Russia’s security demands, or to escalate the conflict to nuclear exchange.

Hypersonic weapons require advanced materials that can withstand the extreme conditions of flight at high speeds and temperatures. Some of the key materials required for hypersonic weapons include:

  1. Carbon-Carbon Composites: Carbon-carbon composites are used in hypersonic vehicles as they have excellent thermal properties and can withstand high temperatures. These composites are made from carbon fibers and carbon matrix and are commonly used in the nose cones and leading edges of hypersonic vehicles.
  2. Ceramic Matrix Composites: Ceramic matrix composites are another type of material used in hypersonic vehicles. These composites consist of ceramic fibers embedded in a ceramic matrix, providing high strength and thermal resistance. They are commonly used in the hot sections of hypersonic engines, such as the combustion chamber and exhaust nozzle.
  3. Refractory Metals: Refractory metals such as tungsten, molybdenum, and niobium are used in the construction of hypersonic vehicles as they have high melting points and can withstand the extreme temperatures experienced during hypersonic flight. Russia is one of the world’s largest producers of tungsten and is also a major producer of molybdenum and niobium. The primary sources of tungsten in Russia are the East Sayan and the Transbaikal regions, while the Kola Peninsula is a major producer of niobium. Molybdenum is mainly produced as a by-product of copper mining in several regions across Russia. The Russian government has made efforts to support the development of its domestic refractory metals industry, and several Russian companies are involved in the exploration, mining, and processing of these materials.
  4. Nickel-Based Superalloys: Nickel-based superalloys are used in the turbine blades of hypersonic engines, as they have excellent mechanical properties and can withstand high temperatures and stresses.

These materials are found in various parts of the world, and their availability depends on several factors such as mining, refining, and manufacturing capabilities. For instance, carbon fibers used in carbon-carbon composites are often produced in Japan, while ceramic matrix composites are manufactured in the United States and Europe. Refractory metals such as tungsten are mined in China and Russia, while nickel-based superalloys are produced in the United States, Europe, and Japan.

Updated Video: What’s going on in Korea?

Combined Forces Command held an exercise called Freedom Shield (FS23) March 13-24 2023. 

DoD: The word ‘Freedom’ in the name refers to the strong will in protecting freedom as an immutable value of the ROK-U.S. Alliance, and ‘Shield’ symbolizes the defensive nature of the exercise. 

Participating units also included personnel from the ROK Military, United States Forces Korea (USFK), United Nations Command (UNC), and subordinate component commands under CFC, along with augmentees, civilian personnel and representatives of the United Nations sending states.

In addition to FS23, several combined field training exercises (FTX), collectively called Warrior Shield FTX, took place around the Korean Peninsula. The name Warrior Shield stands for the ROK-US Alliance’s ability and resolution to solidify their combined defense posture to defend the ROK.

The purpose of the training for Warrior Shield FTX, is to further enhance the ROK and U.S. militaries’ cooperation through air, land, sea, space, cyber and special operations, and improve upon tactics, techniques and procedures. 

Troops of the U.S. 2nd Infantry Division and South Korean army wrapped up their largest joint field exercise in six years with live-fire training near the border with North Korea. The exercise integrated elements of “live exercises” with constructive simulations. These were made more real by North Korea’s decision to live fire a short-range ballistic missile while the troops were massed for the exercises.

DPRK claimed its latest missile launch was designed to simulate a nuclear attack on its neighbor as a protest against the joint South Korea-US military drills. The missile, which was launched from the North’s northwestern Tongchangri area crossed the peninsula and landed in the sea off its east coast about 500 miles offshore. This suggests the missile could target South Korea.

Roughly 800 U.S. and 400 South Korean soldiers conducted the four-day training that ended Thursday at the Rodriguez Live Fire Complex in Pocheon, about 16 miles from the Demilitarized Zone dividing the Korean Peninsula.

Freedom Shield 23 is the latest example of that training and the ironclad commitment to support and defend the ROK sovereignty from any threat or adversary.

The missile, which was launched from the North’s northwestern Tongchangri area, flew across the country and landed in the sea off its east coast, according to South Korean and Japanese assessments, which reported that the missile traveled a distance of about 500 miles. This range suggests the missile could target South Korea.

Watch: Our $$ flooding Ukraine

Haven’t got time to read this? Click on the Tweet at the bottom and you’ll be shocked.

It’s the first time that a European country has held the top spot for foreign aid since the Harry S. Truman administration directed vast sums into rebuilding the continent through the Marshall Plan after World War II. 

Look at this from the Kiel Institute. This is in billions of Euros, which because of chronic mismanagement at our end, is now on a par with the dollar.

Over 2022, the US led the way with major support decisions for Ukraine, with EU countries following with some delay and overtaking the US in the meantime with their total commitments. With additional data through January 15, 2023 the US again takes the lead. Adding pledges of nearly 37 billion euros in December, the Americans have earmarked a total of just over 73.1 billion euros for Ukraine support. For the EU, the comparable figure is 54.9 billion euros. 

But if you REALLY want to understand the immensity of our undertaking to support Ukraine, watch this. And it’s not even up to date, we have given more since this was created. Can you imagine how much we could do with a couple of those dots in your neighborhood?

What do they have on Joe Biden?

Air Force in Illegal and Chilling Misuse of Records

During the 2022 campaign cycle, the Air Force released military records of seven Republican congressional candidates to a research firm aligned with the Democratic party, without authorization.

The Air Force revealed in a letter to House Armed Services Committee Chair Mike Rogers (R-Ala.) and Oversight Committee Chair James Comer (R-Ky.) that an audit by its personnel center found that the records of nine individuals were released to Due Diligence Group between 2021 and 2023.

Of these disclosures, seven affected GOP candidates for office in 2022, including J.R. Majewski, an Ohio candidate known for his support of MAGA, and Robert “Eli” Bremer, who lost in the GOP primary race to challenge Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) last year. Reps. Don Bacon (R-Neb.) and Zach Nunn (R-Iowa), both Air Force veterans, were also among those whose records were released and have called for an investigation into the legality of the requests for their records.

As well as Bacon and Nunn, the previously reported GOP Air Force veterans whose records were released are Jennifer-Ruth Green, an Indiana candidate; Sam Peters, who took on Rep. Steven Horsford (D-Nev.) in November, and Kevin Dellicker, who challenged Rep. Susan Wild (D-Pa.).

The Air Force launched an internal audit of disclosures by its personnel center after POLITICO reported on Green’s records in October. POLITICO was told by the person who gave it Green’s military records that they were obtained through a public records request. More here.

Come with us down the curved-barrel rabbit hole!

I came across this photo. It’s a British STEN gun, the workhorse submachine gun of the second world war. This one has been modified to fire around a corner. Naturally, we went looking for more. And found the video below. Which is bonkers.

Today’s item is a very cool piece – a German Sturmgewehr with a “krummlauf”, or curved barrel attachment. This is the 30 degree type, intended (as goofy as this sounds) for firing around corners and over barricades in urban combat. A 90-degree version was also made for use in armored vehicles.

A U.S. Ordnance officer testing a Krummlauf with grenade launcher attachment

Rand Paul Calls to Sunset War Authorizations

On Tuesday, the day after the 20-year anniversary of the Iraq War, Sen. Rand Paul introduced an amendment to repeal the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF).

The 2001 AUMF was used to enable the U.S. to go into Afghanistan after 9/11. An earlier 1991 AUMF was used to implement the Gulf War. The 2002 AUMF was used by the U.S. to invade Iraq.

These authorizations all remain open-ended even though those missions have been completed. Being still open, various presidents in both parties have claimed these authorizations allow them to strike or wage wars in other places, a power the Executive was never given in the Constitution. The Constitution’s Article I, Section 8 specifically lists as a power of Congress the power “to declare War,” which unquestionably gives the legislature the power to initiate hostilities.

Most people agree, at minimum, that the Declare War Clause grants Congress an exclusive power. That is, Presidents cannot, on their own authority, declare war. “War is sometimes necessary, but going to war should not be the decision of one person,” the senator has sais=d. “Ending congressional authorization for the Gulf war, Iraq war and Afghanistan war returns the war power to the American people and their representatives.” (Based Politics)

Are Supply Chains Broken Forever?

Which invention of the 20th century had the most significant impact on everyday people? Was it the television or personal computer? Actually, it might have been a rather unassuming invention: the shipping container.

Throughout human history, it was extremely costly and time-consuming to transport goods across the world. However, in 1956, entrepreneur Malcolm McLean created the shipping container, which dramatically lowered the cost of transporting goods across the globe. The use of shipping containers increased the efficiency of moving goods, leading to a global revolution. The supply chain has now become central to the world’s economy, with some estimating that 37% of American jobs are supply-chain related.

However, the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed problems in the global supply chain that existed long before the pandemic. The delays and shortages experienced during the pandemic highlighted pre-existing issues that could have long-term consequences, particularly if left unaddressed. 

One analysis of the port in Rotterdam, in the Netherlands, estimated that its use of automation allowed it to move 80 percent more cargo than the non-automated American port in Oakland in the same amount of time.

America’s infrastructure, particularly its ports, is behind other countries in terms of efficiency and automation. Outdated technology and laws, such as the inability to dredge ports, contribute to America’s lagging infrastructure.

The consequences of inefficient ports and transportation methods include slower economic growth, higher costs for importers and exporters, and increased carbon emissions. However, with some modest reforms, the country could turn things around. America is a country of innovators and strivers, after all, and let’s not forget that it was the country that invented the big, stupid box.

Watch this great video from Kite and Key which explains why the inventors of the shipping container have never really understood its potential. Asia, Europe and the UK are way ahead.

What’s up with the Senate?

A while ago we asked “Where is Sen. Fetterman?’ We also mentioned that the oldest sitting Senator, Dianne Feinstein D-CA was still recovering from shingles at her home.

From the New York Post:

The absence of US senators — due to unforeseen medical complications or for unexplained reasons — is delaying key votes and legislation, according to a new report…

The absences have thrown confirmation proceedings in the Senate Judiciary Committee into disarray, as controversial First Circuit Court nominee Michael Delaney awaits a vote.

These missing senators have been a problem for months, now. The Senate apparently hasn’t had a full attendance since August of 2022. This puts not just legislation in jeopardy, but nominees for judge seats. The 51-49 Democratic-held Senate has been reduced to a 49-48 Senate thanks to absences by both parties, with that number fluctuating from day to day, causing roadblocks in the upper chamber of Congress.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Sens. John Fetterman (D-PA) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) have no timetable for when they plan to return to the Senate. McConnell, 81, is recovering from a concussion suffered during a fall. Fetterman, 53, is receiving treatment for depression, and Feinstein, 89, is receiving treatment for shingles which required a hospital stay. Feinstein announced she would not be seeking reelection in 2024, opening the door for a battle between California Democrats for the seat she has held since 1992. 

McConnell’s absence has required Sen. John Thune (R-SD) to run the GOP conference with assistance from McConnell’s aides, while Sen. Bob Casey’s (D-PA) staff has had to fulfill constituent requests and work on legislation for Fetterman, per Politico.

Give this man a medal!

Dr. Fauci and the mayor of the District of Columbia went door-to-door in the Anacostia neighborhood of the city back in 2021 to make the case for getting the COVID-19 vaccine. They did not always get a warm welcome. 

Sen. Ted Cruz is calling Dr. Anthony Fauci a “dangerous door-to-door salesman” in response to a viral video of the now-retired federal health official and D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser peddling the COVID-19 vaccine to residents of a Washington, D.C, neighborhood.

“Anthony Fauci isn’t just content to be the most destructive bureaucrat in American history, he also wants to be the most dangerous door-to-door salesman in American history,” CruzR-Texas, said Monday on Twitter.

Included in a two-hour “American Masters” documentary about Fauci premiering Tuesday night on PBS, the video shows the doctor and the Democratic D.C. mayor knocking on doors in 2021 in the Anacostia neighborhood of Southeast D.C., a low-income African-American neighborhood Fauci called “disenfranchised” with low vaccination rates. 

“The new season of ‘American Horror Story,’” Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., tweeted about the video clip from the PBS documentary, likening it to the long-running anthology series on the FX cable channel.

One Anacostia resident challenged Bowser and Fauci, saying he would “definitely” pass on getting vaccinated “because when you start talking about paying people to get vaccinated, when you start talking about incentivizing things to get people vaccinated, it’s something else going on with that.”

“[Your] campaign is about fear,” he said. “It’s about inciting fear in people. You all attack people with fear. That’s what this pandemic is. It’s a fear, it’s fear, this pandemic. That’s all it is.”

The hero we need

A skeptical resident of Southeast Washington, D.C., told Dr. Anthony Fauci and D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser he wouldn’t get the COVID-19 vaccine. (Photo: PBS’ “American Masters.”)

The man pressed the two about the vaccine’s unusually rapiddevelopment, saying, “Nine months is definitely not enough for nobody to be taking no vaccination that you all came up with.”
“The only reason I’m talking to you right now, as close as we are, is that I’ve been vaccinated,” Bowser said in defense of the vaccine while standing about six feet from the man on his front porch.

A woman whose home they visited responded to the duo, saying, “I heard that [the vaccine] doesn’t cure it, and it doesn’t stop you from getting it.”

Fauci lamented “hesitancy” about taking the vaccine. 

“It’s so crazy. I mean, they’re not doing it because they say they don’t want to do it. They’re Republicans. They don’t like to be told what to do. And we got to break that, unpack that,” Fauci said.

New Army guns not without critics

FORT BENNING, Ga. – Soldiers of the 4th Ranger Training Battalion, Airborne and Ranger Training Brigade (U.S. Army photo by Patrick A. Albright, Maneuver Center of Excellence and Fort Benning Public Affairs)

ANALYSIS – The Army is getting new guns. Well, at least new rifles. As I’ve written beforeSig Sauer won the competition in 2022 to field the new XM7 Rifle and XM250 Automatic Rifle combination to replace the M4A1 Carbine and M249 Squad Automatic Weapon within the next decade.

Both new weapons use the highly touted, fresh new 6.8mm round.

The Marine Corps and Special Operations Command (SOCOM) were also included in the years-long testing and development and will have the option to adopt the new-caliber weapons.

Both new weapons use the highly touted, fresh new 6.8mm round.

The Marine Corps and Special Operations Command (SOCOM) were also included in the years-long testing and development and will have the option to adopt the new-caliber weapons.

NextGen tests in extreme conditions

The new guns, with the new ammo, should allow users to shoot farther, faster, more accurately and hence more lethally than the two legacy weapons chambered in 5.56mm.

The program is known as the Next Generation Squad Weapons (NGSW). And now the Army is going to be testing them in extreme conditions this summer.

According to a Tuesday press release, these conditions will range from hot and cold to mud and “salt fog.” The release added that the new guns are expected to undergo airborne testing sometime next year.

In addition to those extreme environment tests, the Army will test the weapons’ ability to handle malfunctions and blank firing in what the service is calling Production Qualification Testing, or PQT.

Meanwhile, the rifles will continue to trickle out to line units.

While the new two weapons have gotten generally good performance reviews, especially among special operators, some aren’t so sure about one of them.

And the new, heavier round is part of the reason. Overall weight is the other.

As reports:

One former 75th Ranger Regiment officer told that the XM250 “is a welcome replacement to the outdated and largely unreliable M249. It’s lighter, more accurate, and uses a far superior round.”

But the weapons aren’t perfect, and the continued testing, especially the extreme environmental assessments that will occur between May and July, will likely show where those flaws may lie.

“The [XM7] is incredible in terms of its features and capabilities, but it’s too heavy, and too large right now to be a standard infantry rifle,” said the former Ranger officer, who was granted anonymity out of concern that talking to the media might impact professional prospects.

The fielding brings new ammo, as well. The lighter 5.56mm will be replaced with a heavier 6.8mm round. The additional weight, though seemingly minimal, adds up for grunts carrying it and a heavier weapon over long distances.

Referring to the XM7 Rifle intended to replace the M4, the former Ranger officer said, “I see it [as] more of a designated marksman rifle [rather] than a standard issue combat rifle.”

He added: “The new round is amazing performance-wise, but the average soldier can’t carry nearly as many rounds compared to the 5.56.”

Dr. Allan Orr, a strategic studies specialist who focuses on asymmetric warfare, has made a far more scathing review of the entire NGSW program.

Writing in the Army Times in February, Orr notes:

On all key technical measures, the Next Generation Squad Weapons program is imploding before Army’s very eyes. The program is on mechanical life support, with its progenitors at the Joint Chiefs obstinately now ramming the program through despite spectacularly failing multiple civilian-sector peer reviews almost immediately upon commercial release.

Orr also notes the new rifles’ operating system, saying: “Possibly aiming to avoid long-term health and safety issues associated with rifle gas, Army has selected an operating system less hardy in battlefield environments.”

He adds:

Civilian testing, testing Army either never did or is hiding, also only recently demonstrated that the rifle seemingly fails, at point-blank ranges, to meet its base criteria of penetrating Level 4 body armor (unassisted)… Of course, the rounds can penetrate body armor with Armor Piercing rounds, but so can 7.62x51mm NATO, even 5.56x45mm NATO.

While the Army never explicitly set this goal, it has insinuated to everyone, from the media to Congress, that this was a reason for the new weapons.

“The fundamental problem with the program,” Orr explains, “is there remains not enough tungsten available from China, as Army knows, to make the goal of making every round armor piercing even remotely feasible.”

Of course, relying on China for critical minerals for U.S. military purposes should be the biggest problem.

Orr also takes aim (pun intended) at the new sight chosen for the rifles.

He writes:

The Vortex XM-157, which may have critical components made in China, is most definitely not an ‘auto-aiming’ sight. For guaranteed hits, the shooter still must manually ‘ping’ the target. This takes back usable seconds and makes shooting 100% accurately on the fly, as envisioned under the program to justify the reduced available round count, an utter pipe dream. The scope is otherwise a normal scope.

Orr concludes: “Starting from a highly dubious intellectual, strategic and tactical baseline, the NGSW program is now failing mechanically and ballistically at once.”

So, now let’s see what the ‘extreme’ conditions testing and PQT will show us. And let’s see if the Army is honest about the results.

By Paul Crespo March 17, 2023. American Liberty News. Reproduced with permission.

This invasive species was found in a suitcase coming from Africa – again

Not for the first time smugglers are trying to import Giant African snails to the US.

Back in 2021 the Border Patrol agents “caught” 22 Giant African Snails during a baggage examination of a U.S. man who arrived on a flight from Ghana. On March 9th, six Giant African Snails, an invasive species in the US, were seized by agriculture specialists at US Customs and Border Protection at the Detroit Metropolitan Airport.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Giant African Snail (GAS) is one of the most damaging snails in the world because it consumes at least 500 types of plants. It threatens U.S. agricultural resources and causes extensive damage to tropical and sub-tropical environments. It also causes structural damage to plaster and stucco structures. GAS reproduce quickly, producing about 1,200 eggs in a single year.

The highly invasive Giant African Snail also poses a serious health risk to humans because it carries a parasitic nematode that can lead to meningitis. In Ghana, the snails are often enjoyed as pets and also eaten as food.

China builds navy while US top brass does this.

“China is running out of provincial capitals to name new destroyers, and it might have to turn to other big domestic cities, which reflects the country’s rapid naval development in recent years,” according to Chinese newspaper Global Times.

The People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) surpassed the US Navy in fleet size sometime around 2020 and now has around 340 warships, according to the DoD’s 2022 China Military Power Report, released in November. China’s fleet is expected to grow to 400 ships in the next two years, the report says.

Meanwhile, the U.S. fleet consists of fewer than 300 ships, with a Pentagon goal of 350 manned ships by 2045, according to the U.S. Navy’s Navigation Plan 2022, released last summer.

The key metric is the “blue water navy”. That is the maritime force capable of operating globally, essentially across open oceans. While definitions of what actually constitutes such a force vary, the constant is a requirement for the ability to exercise sea control at long range. In other words, the more dominant a nation’s blue-water navy, the better chance that nation has of controlling the world’s strategic sea lanes. (Red State)

Meanwhile in America

Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro said he sees fighting climate change as a top priority for the Navy as the Biden administration proposes shrinking the fleet by two ships and worries grow about how the U.S. Navy stacks up to China’s.

“As the Secretary of the Navy, I can tell you that I have made climate one of my top priorities since the first day I came into office,” Del Toro said March 1 in remarks at the University of the Bahamas. FoxNews. “The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps team has been working on climate and energy security for a long time,” he said. “And we are accelerating and broadening those efforts.”

California – Land of Plenty Fails Yet Again

A plea from a resident

Looking in the wrong place

President Biden and his left-wing buddies are dead set (no pun intended) on massive new gun control — constitutional or not — to eliminate gun deaths.

According to the Gun Violence Archive there were 20,138 gun deaths in 2022 (excluding suicides).

That’s a terrible number.  And every constitutional effort should be made to lower that number (maybe enforcing existing laws and keeping thugs in prison would help).  The devastation that comes with that many homicides cannot be overstated.  And it’s a stain on our nation.

But if they really cared about deaths, maybe they should think about closing the border.

According to the Centers for Disease Control there were a staggering 110,236 deaths from synthetic opioids, most of them caused by illegal Fentanyl smuggled across our border.

That’s over 5 times more deaths from illegal drugs than from firearms.

Image: Kelly McCarthy – Rare section of border with a “fence.” In this case, repurposed Vietnam-era temporary landing strips. Note the big gap illegal entrants climb over. Taken in California.

The Biden Administration and the Democrats in the Congress should get their facts straight and close our borders to the massive inflow of drugs instead of chasing their anti-constitutional dreams of gun control.

Well, that’s embarrassing! Newark Major makes HUGE mistake

The Honorable Mayor Ras J. Baraka is the son of writer and playwright Amiri Baraka and poet Amina Baraka. He received his B.A. degree in political science from Howard University in 1991; and earned his M.A. degree in education supervision from St. Peter’s University in Jersey City in 1994.

So you think he’d be a bit more savvy. Maybe know how to Google? But still we feel for him!

Mayor Ras Baraka invited representatives of “Kailasa” to Newark’s City Hall for a “cultural trade agreement,” according to CBS New York, but there’s one problem, “Kailasa” isn’t a real country. So basically, the Newark mayor signed a deal with a Hindu nation that does not exist.

What started off as a seemingly well-intentioned partnership has turned into a giant embarrassment for the city of Newark,” Bauman says in her report. “Earlier this year, Mayor Ras Baraka invited what he thought was the Hindu nation of Kailasa to Newark City Hall for a cultural trade agreement, but it turns out Kailasa is no nation at all, it’s a fake.”

“Kailasa” is reportedly the fabrication of a notorious scam artist and fugitive from India who is called Swami Nithyananda. CBS News reports that Nithyananda has “been on the run from rape charges since 2019.”

Trying to make lemonade, City Hall said:
Although this was a regrettable incident, the city of Newark remains committed to partnering with people from diverse cultures in order to enrich each other with connectivity, support, and mutual respect,”

Shadow Puppets you won’t believe!

Shadowgraphy or ombromanie is the art of performing a story or show using images made by hand shadows. It can be called “cinema in silhouette”. Performers are titled as a shadowgraphist or shadowgrapher.

The art has declined since the late 19th century when electricity became available to homes because light bulbs and electric lamps do not give off good shadows and because cinema and television were becoming a new form of entertainment. Shadows are greatly defined by candlelight; therefore hand shadows were common in earlier centuries.

Shadows have existed since the existence of objects obstructing light, so it is hard to say when the art was first used by humans for entertainment. It could have been practiced by ancient or later humans, but it probably originated in the Far East. The French entertainer Félicien Trewey was interested in the art of Chinese shadow puppetry called Ombres Chinoises(Known in China as the pi ying xi(皮影戏)), which means “Chinese shadows”. He popularized the art of hand shadows when he developed shadows of famous silhouettes. It then became popular in Europe in the 19th century.

It’s still a neat way to entertain kids.

But if you want a masterclass!

Why Taxes Are Harmful: A Response to The Woke Salaryman

The Woke Salaryman believes taxes are important for a thriving society. The reality is quite the opposite.

Image Credit: The Woke Salaryman

A Singapore-based webcomic called The Woke Salaryman recently posted a comic extolling the virtues of taxation and encouraging people to pay their taxes. The comic, called “Why are taxes important?” goes through three common talking points about the supposed benefits of taxation and public services.

Since these same points come up so frequently in debates over taxation, it’s worth taking the time to respond to them in turn. So let’s start with the first point and see what can be said in response.

The first point the comic brings up in favor of taxation is the fact that taxes fund public services.

“It may not always be immediately apparent, but we enjoy a lot of public services without a second thought of how they came to be,” it says. The comic goes on to list a variety of services the government provides, such as properly paved roads, healthcare facilities, parks to enjoy, and public education.

Though these kinds of public services are often presented as an obvious boon to society, it’s worth asking why we should assume that. It’s not like this is a free lunch, after all. As Henry Hazlitt reminds us in Economics in One Lesson, we need to keep in mind the unseen costs of such services, namely, the things this money might have been spent on if it hadn’t been used to fund public services (economists call these forgone opportunities opportunity costs).

The fact is that every dollar spent on public services is a dollar that can’t be spent on private services, so at best, this is just a one-for-one transfer. For every $1 million in public services we gain, we lose $1 million in private services.

In reality, however, it’s almost always worse than that, because politicians—unlike private-sector entrepreneurs—have no way of knowing which allocation of resources will be the most beneficial to consumers.

If consumers value hospitals much more than public parks, for example, entrepreneurs in a free market will be able to make a profit by taking land used for public parks and using it for hospitals instead. Over time, this will lead to less land being used for parks and more land being used for hospitals. Thus, resources will tend to be directed toward meeting the most urgent needs of the consumers.

With public services, however, there is no way of knowing whether the service being provided is the best use of the resources being used, because there’s no profit and loss (this is known as the economic calculation problem). Thus, governments may maintain plenty of public parks out of an attempted benevolence, but they might actually be tying up land and other resources that could have been used for more important ends, like hospitals.

However, since there are no losses to indicate this kind of waste is taking place, governments will tend to perpetuate these wasteful uses of resources, all the while patting themselves on the back for being so helpful to the community. In reality, public services are likely far less helpful than the services that would have been provided in the free market had consumers been allowed to keep their money and spend it on the things they valued most.

Having listed examples of public services, the comic finishes the section with the following point. “Where does this money come from? That’s right; taxes. Put it simply, taxes are like your (mandatory) subscription fee to living in your country or community.”

The problem with this point is that legitimate subscription fees are paid voluntarily by willing customers. But taxes are not voluntary. They are, in fact, a form of extortion. Now, some argue that taxes technically are voluntary because you can always leave the country if you don’t like them, but such claims are dubious to say the least.

The 20th century economist Joseph Schumpeter put it well when he wrote that “the theory which construes taxes on the analogy of club dues or the purchase of a service of, say, a doctor only proves how far removed this part of the social sciences is from scientific habits of mind.”

The second argument the comic presents in favor of taxes is that they can be used to encourage and discourage certain types of behavior. When it comes to encouraging socially desirable behavior, the comic gives some examples such as tax relief for parents (encouraging people to start families) and tax deductions for donating money to charity (encouraging philanthropy).

Socially undesirable behavior can likewise be discouraged with extra taxes, such as taxes on tobacco and alcohol to reduce the prevalence of smoking and drinking.

One issue with this use of the tax system is that it amounts to a kind of paternalism. The state not only presumes to know what’s best for you, but is kind enough to give you various carrots and sticks to keep you on the right track—for your own good, of course.

Not only does such a system foster resentment against the state—or at least it should—for trying to micromanage our lives, it also breeds social strife. When these kinds of policies are on the table, everything they touch is inevitably politicized. A variety of factions and tribes then form, each of them attempting to win control over the political system so they can 1) stop the other tribes from enacting their carrots and sticks and 2) force their own carrots and sticks on everyone else.

Suffice it to say, this is hardly a recipe for social harmony.

The final argument the comic makes in favor of taxes is that they help support the more disadvantaged in society.

“Most societies try to provide EVERYONE a decent shot at life; not just the wealthiest. For everyone to grow together, the government will collect money via various types of taxes, and use the resources to provide everyone with equal access to opportunity. This is done via grants, subsidies, or other forms of government support.”

At the outset, it’s important to distinguish between two motivations for direct government transfers from the rich to the poor. The first is egalitarian—people believe the government should equalize the level of affluence in society, even if that means taking from some to give to others. The second is humanitarian—providing a social safety net for the poorest so they can afford to meet their basic needs.

The egalitarian argument is often based on the idea of fairness. But why should income equality be considered fair? After all, many rich people worked very hard for their wealth, while many poor people have squandered resources even when they could have made better choices. Is it really fair to take from the former to give to the latter? And if so, how much is required to balance the scales? As the economist Thomas Sowell famously asked, “what is your ‘fair share’ of what someone else has worked for?”

The humanitarian point is of course the better argument for using taxes to redistribute wealth from the rich to the poor. Very few will say we should simply let the poor starve so that rich people can have their yachts.

But taxing the rich to fund social safety nets and letting the poor starve are not the only options here. The third option is for the government to simply get out of the way.

Though the government likes to depict itself as the defender of the poor, the reality is that it often causes—or at least exacerbates—many of the economic problems the poorest among us face. Aside from mismanaging tax dollars as explained above, it also maintains a litany of regulations such as licensing requirementszoning lawsIP laws, and tariffs that push the cost of living far higher than it needs to be.

If these laws were repealed, economic prosperity would improve rapidly, and what little poverty remained after that could easily be addressed by charities and mutual-aid societies.

Why not take the more direct root of wealth transfers through taxes? Because at the end of the day welfare systems still amount to robbing Peter to pay Paul. That doesn’t mean we should simply hang the Pauls of the world out to dry. But it does mean that solutions which don’t involve legal plunder should be favored wherever possible.

The comic closes by reiterating the benefits of taxation and exhorting people to contribute their fair share. “Want to live in a society that thrives?” it concludes. “Pay your taxes.”

This message is hardly unexpected for a comic promoting taxation. But in light of the above analysis, a rather different takeaway seems to be in order.

Far from being helpful, taxation is actually tremendously harmful, not just for taxpayers, but for almost everyone. It leads to wasted resources and political strife, and it unfairly takes from those who have earned their money through voluntary work and exchange.

There are beneficiaries, of course, but they often look far more like politicians and special-interest groups than the poor and downtrodden we’re told we are helping. And even when taxes do genuinely help those who are disadvantaged, they are inevitably funding bureaucratic, mismanaged programs that are only needed because of barriers the politicians themselves erected.

The path to a peaceful, prosperous, and harmonious society has nothing to do with taxation. That kind of society can only be achieved when people are allowed to keep their hard-earned money and spend it as they see fit.

So, want to live in a society that thrives?

Protest your taxes.

by Patrick Carroll. Click here to read/share this story online. Reproduced with permission of

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