EPOCH TIMES, AMERICAN THOUGHT LEADERS: Peter Boghossian on Woke Ideology: ‘A Recipe for Cultural Suicide’; Case for Defunding Universities

NY lawmaker: Biden infrastructure bill an ‘authoritarian takeover’ of US~Democrats Could Pass Massive ‘Infrastructure’ Bill Without 1 GOP Vote

Rep. Claudia Tenney, R-N.Y., on the Democrat spending bill and the New York State budget.

Democrats Could Pass Massive 'Infrastructure' Bill Without 1 GOP Vote


SEE: https://www.dailysignal.com/2021/04/06/democrats-could-pass-massive-infrastructure-bill-without-1-gop-vote;

republished below in full unedited for informational, educational & research purposes:

The Senate’s parliamentarian has ruled that Democrats can use budget reconciliation for a second time in the same fiscal year, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said.

Senate Democrats’ ability to use the legislative tool means that, hypothetically, they could pass President Joe Biden’s disputed infrastructure bill with a simple majority vote instead of the 60 votes required to override a filibuster.

If reconciliation proceeds, then Democrats would have enough votes to pass Biden’s infrastructure and tax packages with Vice President Kamala Harris’s tie-breaking vote if every senator in the party votes in favor.

“The parliamentarian has advised that a revised budget resolution may contain budget reconciliation instructions,” Schumer’s spokesman said in a formal statement, referring to Senate parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough’s Monday evening ruling.

Schumer, D-N.Y., also could pass a third budget resolution in fiscal year 2022, when Democrats still will have full control of Washington. His office previously lobbied MacDonough that the majority could revise the 2021 resolution under Section 304 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974.

“This [ruling] confirms the Leader’s interpretation of the Budget Act and allows Democrats additional tools to improve the lives of Americans if Republican obstruction continues,” the written statement by Schumer’s spokesman said.

Democrats previously used reconciliation to pass Biden’s sweeping $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package March 11 over unanimous Republican objections.

Biden’s $2.25 trillion infrastructure plan would be funded largely by tax increases on wealthy Americans and corporations, which Republicans have labeled as a non-starter.

Some Democrats also objected to the bill as written, including Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., who came out against the bill Monday.

“As the bill exists today, it needs to be changed,” Manchin said. “It’s more than just me. There are six or seven other Democrats who feel very strongly about this. We have to be competitive, and we’re not going to throw caution to the wind.”

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ALSO SEE: https://www.dailysignal.com/2021/04/07/9-things-you-need-to-know-about-bidens-infrastructure-spending-plan

Pentagon Promotes Radical Resources to Kill ‘Extremism’


SEE: https://www.dailysignal.com/2021/04/06/exclusive-pentagon-promotes-radical-resources-to-kill-extremism-in-ranks;

republished below in full unedited for informational, educational & research purposes:

The Defense Department is promoting reading resources on opposing “systemic racism” that include radical authors as part of a program to combat extremism within the ranks of the military.  

In a virtual meeting for “all hands” last month, the agenda—obtained by The Daily Signal—counted the scandal-plagued Southern Poverty Law Center as a credible resource alongside the Department of Homeland Security and the University of Maryland. 

The Southern Poverty Law Center is a left-wing activist group known for labeling organizations it opposes as “hate groups.”

Authors touted by the Pentagon include radical voices such as Ibram X. Kendi and Ta-Nehisi Coates.

The meeting agenda, titled “Policy ‘Stand Down’ Extremis” and marked “Virtual Policy All Hands,” unfolded from 9 to 10:30 a.m. March 22.

The meeting included a recorded message from Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, a former four-star Army general who was appointed by President Joe Biden and took office Jan. 22. 

Recommended resources for attendees also included several references to a video of a 1965 debate at Cambridge between influential conservative journalist William F. Buckley and acclaimed novelist-essayist James Baldwin, who wrote about the black experience growing up in Harlem. 

The Pentagon’s agenda suggests viewing the video and describes the debate as: “A stark contrast between the perspective of one person living a life subjected to racism and another person living a life privileged by racism.” 

Radical Reading List

A Pentagon spokeswoman told The Daily Signal late Tuesday that she would not have a specific response to this report before publication. 

At the end of the meeting agenda, the Defense Department clearly states that it isn’t endorsing every sentiment of the authors it suggests as resources: 

All views expressed by authors and speakers referenced here are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of Defense or the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy.

The book “The Fire Next Time,” comprised of two of Baldwin’s essays and originally published in 1963, is one of the Pentagon’s recommended resources for service members. 

The agenda for the Pentagon program recommends two books by Kendi, including “Stamped From the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America.” Amazon’s description of the book says: “Some Americans insist that we’re living in a post-racial society. But racist thought is not just alive and well in America—it is more sophisticated and more insidious than ever.”

The meeting agenda also includes Kendi’s more recent and well-known book “How to Be an Antiracist.” Amazon’s description says, “Racism intersects with class and culture and geography and even changes the way we see and value ourselves,” and adds that Kendi’s book “will help readers see all forms of racism clearly, understand their poisonous consequences, and work to oppose them in our systems and in ourselves.”

Kendi, director of the Center for Antiracist Research at Boston University, has pushed the “anti-racist” movement, which redefines racism as a matter of equity and stresses that “assimilationists” are on a par with segregationists.

Members of Congress raised objections in March to the Navy’s promotion of Kendi on reading lists, as well as other books. 

Reps. Doug Lamborn, R-Colo., and Vicky Hartzler, R-Mo., both members of the House Armed Services Committee, wrote to Adm. Michael M. Gilday, chief of naval operations, saying that Kendi’s writing suggests service members are fighting for a systemically racist country. 

The Navy has declined to remove any books from Gilday’s list of recommended reading. 

Targeting Violent Extremism

Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., a combat veteran of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, proposed legislation to block the teaching of critical race theory in the military.

Critical race theory defines individuals as oppressed or oppressor based on skin color and views history and human interactions as a perpetual racial conflict.

The agenda for the March 22 meeting also recommends the 2015 book “Between the World and Me” by Coates, an advocate for paying blacks reparations for slavery in America. 

Amazon’s description says the book seeks to answer these questions: “What is it like to inhabit a black body and find a way to live within it? And how can we all honestly reckon with this fraught history and free ourselves from its burden?”

To be sure, the agenda of the Pentagon’s virtual meeting wasn’t limited to politics or assertions of “systemic racism.” It also refers to books and videos that address violent extremism, including the 2018 book “Bring the War Home: The White Power Movement and Paramilitary America” by Kathleen Belew and the 2020 book “Hate in the Homeland: The New Global Far Right” by Cynthia Miller-Idris.

Another listed resource is the 2020 book “Breaking Hate: Confronting the New Culture of Extremism” by Christian Picciolini, who was radicalized by white supremacists at age 14 and joined violent groups, but eventually found a way out. The agenda also recommends Picciolini’s TED Talk, titled “My Descent Into America’s Neo-Nazi Movement.”

Prohibited Activity

In response to questions, a Pentagon spokeswoman referred The Daily Signal to 2009 guidelines on what constitutes “prohibited activity” for enlisted service members.

“No commander should be indifferent to conduct that, if allowed to proceed unchecked, would destroy the effectiveness of his or her unit,” those guidelines note. 

The guidelines also call for commanders to approve “policies and procedures” developed by the secretaries of the Army, Navy, Air Force, and other military departments “to implement this instruction.”

The Pentagon issued the guidelines after the 2009 shooting at Fort Hood, an Army base in Texas.

The guidelines continue:

A commander may require prior approval of publications to be distributed on a military installation through other than official outlets to determine if the publication would: (a) Create a clear danger to the loyalty, discipline, or morale of military personnel; or (b) Materially interfere with the accomplishment of the military mission. … 

Commanders have the authority to place establishments off-limits in accordance with established procedures when, for example, the activities taking place at these establishments include, but are not limited to, counseling, encouraging, or inciting service members to refuse to perform duty  …

Military personnel must not actively advocate supremacist, extremist, or criminal gang doctrine, ideology, or causes, including those that advance, encourage, or advocate illegal discrimination based on race, creed, color, sex, religion, ethnicity, or national origin or those that advance, encourage, or advocate the use of force, violence, or criminal activity or otherwise advance efforts to deprive individuals of their civil rights. 

Scheduling ‘Stand-Down’

The Defense Department on Feb. 5 issued a public memo regarding “extremism in the ranks” that directed commanding officers at all levels to “select a date within the next 60 days to conduct a one-day ‘stand-down’ on this issue with their personnel.”

The memo came about one month after the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol, after which officials deployed National Guard troops to patrol a newly fenced perimeter around the building where Congress meets.

The memo says:

We will not tolerate actions that go against the fundamental principles of the oath we share, including actions associated with extremist or dissident ideologies. Service members, DoD civilian employees, and all those who support our mission, deserve an environment free of discrimination, hate, and harassment. It is incumbent upon each of us to ensure that actions associated with these corrosive behaviors are prevented.

The memo says military leaders have discretion in the discussion about addressing extremism in the ranks, but all should focus on the oath they take to serve the nation. 

“You should use this opportunity to listen as well to the concerns, experiences, and possible solutions that the men and women of the workforce may proffer in these stand-down sessions,” the memo says. 

‘Eliminate Extremist Behaviors’

The Navy conducted a separate PowerPoint presentation “that touched on “anti-government extremists” and “recent events,” former Justice Department lawyer J. Christian Adams reported in PJ Media last month after obtaining documents about the presentation.  

The Defense Department information obtained by Adams includes this statement:

If we don’t eliminate extremist behaviors from our Navy, then racism, injustice, indignity and disrespect will grow and keep us from reaching our potential—an inclusive, respectful, professional fighting force that answers the nation’s call. If we must first question the intentions of our shipmate standing the watch with us, now, and especially, when taking fire, we will fail when the nation needs us most in combat.

The documents obtained by Adams, president of Public Interest Legal Foundation, also recommend “do’s” and “don’ts” to Navy commanders when engaging personnel, including:

Do be alert to statements about Prohibited Behavior (Extremism in the Ranks) which rely on inaccurate or misleading assumptions, misperception or myth. Correct these inaccuracies in a resolute, respectful manner.  … Do Not allow only a few participants to dominate the conversation.

Steven Hall and Ken McIntyre contributed to this report. 

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The New American: Biden Treasury Secretary Yellen Embraces Globalism, Calls for Global Corporate Minimum Tax


SEE: https://thenewamerican.com/biden-treasury-secretary-yellen-embraces-globalism-calls-for-global-corporate-minimum-tax/;

republished below in full unedited for informational, educational & research purposes:

In a pugnacious speech on Monday to the Chicago Council on Global Affairs — an organization formed in 1922 as the Chicago Council on Foreign Relations — President Joe Biden’s secretary of the treasury, Janet Yellen, explicitly rejected the “America First” standard used by former President Donald Trump. Instead, Yellen made it very clear that her priority is the “international order,” even calling for a minimum global corporate income tax.

While the Chicago Council on Global Affairs pretends to be a “neutral forum” to discuss world politics, it clearly promotes the idea that American foreign policy should put the world, not America, first. Globalists have dominated its leadership for years. For example, globalist and Kennedy-era UN Ambassador Adlai Stevenson was its president in the 1930s.

Yellen’s speech certainly reinforced the organization’s globalist ideology.

Without mentioning him by name, Yellen contrasted Trump’s supposed isolationism with Biden’s dedication to internationalist principles. “In the most recent period, when we might have adopted policies at home to face these issues and joined our allies to address issues abroad, we isolated ourselves and retreated from the international order that we created.”

Of course, isolationist is a straw-man argument, and it is intended as a slur. President Trump was engaged with other nations regularly, but instead of adapting policy to what was good for the European Union, or China, or some other nation, power, or international organization, it was his policy to put America First. Globalists such as Yellen typically will attribute all sorts of calamities to “isolationism.” On the 50th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, then-President George H.W. Bush blamed the “isolationism” of the United States for that incident. Of course, this is ludicrous, as it was America’s increasing involvement on the side of China in the Second Sino-Japanese War, including an oil embargo against the Japanese, that eventually led to the attack on December 7, 1941. In other words, it was not some abstract principle of American “isolationism” that caused Hideki Tojo to go to war against the United States.

Yet, Yellen followed this globalist propaganda pattern in her speech. “Over the past four years, we have seen firsthand what happens when America steps back from the global stage. America first must never mean America alone. For in today’s world, no country alone can suitably provide a strong and sustainable economy for its people. Over time, a lack of global leadership and engagement makes our institutions and economy vulnerable.” (Emphasis added.)

According to Yellen, the “invaluable lesson” that was learned from the Great Depression and the Second World War was “the United States must not go it alone.”

This is, of course, based on some rather faulty premises as to what caused the Great Depression and the Second World War. Certainly, the Great Depression was not caused by the United States going it alone. Had the United States stayed out of the First World War, the belligerents in Europe would have most likely come to a peaceful settlement, and the monetary systems of the great powers, including that of the United States, would not have been weakened by inflation caused by governments printing money to pay for the war. That inflation, as was predicted by the great economist Ludwig von Mises, is what caused the economic collapse of 1929 — not “isolationism.”

As is typical, however, government causes a problem, blames it on something else, then offers a “solution” of more government. Yellen supports this notion completely. “In the aftermath of destruction [of World War II], the United States built strong political and security alliances that helped keep our country safe and helped our economies flourish. We created global institutions, such as the United Nations, and financial institutions, such as the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, to reduce economic conflict and address global poverty.”

Of course, this supposed addressing of global poverty meant trillions of dollars out of the pockets of American taxpayers to foreign nations. One must wonder: If the IMF were so successful, why does Yellen so strongly criticize all the supposed “inequality” in the world that remains?

Speaking of economic issues, Yellen addressed Biden’s promised corporate tax-rate hike from 21 percent to 28 percent, intended to help pay for his massive infrastructure spending plan. Realizing that an increase in U.S. corporate tax rates could send American companies overseas, as happened during the Obama administration, Yellen pushed for a minimum global corporate income tax, particularly across G-20 nations. “It is important to work with other countries to end the pressures of tax competition and corporate tax base erosion,” Yellen said.

She also condemned Trump — although, again, not by name — for the problems of COVID-19. “We did not respond sufficiently last year to address the devastating health crisis at home and failed to engage early to address the crisis beyond our borders.” (Emphasis added.) Actually, it was Trump who did address the crisis “beyond our borders,” when he moved quickly to prevent any entry into the United States of people coming from China, where the virus originated. It was Yellen’s boss, Joe Biden, who criticized Trump as xenophobic for taking this prompt action.

Predictably, Yellen used the COVID-19 pandemic to as justification for globalism: “COVID-19 has clearly shown that pandemic responses require global cooperation.”

Finally, she touted global action on “climate change,” calling it the “biggest long-term threat the world faces.” Claiming that the United States sat “on the sidelines for four years” on this issue, she praised Biden for rejoining the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. “Treasury is working closely with our international partners and international organizations to implement ambitious emissions reduction measures, protect critical ecosystems, build resilience against the impacts of climate change, and promote the flow of capital toward climate-aligned investments and away from carbon-intensive investments,” adding that “finance ministries and central banks will work together to identify mechanisms for promoting green investments and accelerating transition to a zero-net economy.”

What Yellen is saying here is that we need more globalism and government control of the economy to fight climate change, which will require subsidies for things such as solar and wind power, and restrictions on the oil, gas, and coal industries.

Whatever else Yellen is for, it is not limited government and free enterprise. And her boss, President Joe Biden, appears to be in perfect agreement with her.