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I had to read the headline and article twice because I thought my eyes were deceiving me: https://www.foxnews.com/politics/california-supreme-court-rejects-law-requiring-trump-to-release-tax-returns-to-be-on-primary-ballot More

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The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals has just received another confirmed Trump appointee, tilting the balance toward Originalism and away from Progressivism. Welcome Barbara Lagoa, confirmed 85-15 by the US Senate. From the article: The Eleventh Circuit is now the third such transformation during President Trump’s first term. Another, and arguably the most important, campaign […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. The DACA Dilemma

 

Activists protest President Donald Trump’s decision to end DACA, Portland, OR, Sept. 5, 2017. (Shutterstock.com)
A vexed Supreme Court is now considering the legal status of the highly popular program, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, better known as DACA. DACA’s survival is now up for grabs in three related cases before the Court, which are being consolidated under the name Department of Homeland Security v. Regents of the University of California. The Court displayed its angst about the legality of DACA during last week’s oral argument for the case.

In June 2012, President Barack Obama initiated the program whereby children who were brought into the United States illegally became eligible to remain for two-year renewable periods so long as they did not commit any felonies or misdemeanors. As designed, the program does not offer these “Dreamers” a path toward citizenship, but it does authorize them to get jobs, obtain driver’s licenses, social security, and a host of other privileges. There are now close to 700,000 Dreamers in the United States, and they have often excelled, as students, military personnel, and workers. Most emphatically, they are not “far from angels,” let alone “hardened criminals,” as President Trump scandalously tweeted on the day of oral argument.

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Back to our usual format with three big stories today! Jim and Greg applaud the Senate for passing legislation designed to sanction anyone found targeting the human rights of people in Hong Kong, but they still wish the demonstrators could get some public support from President Trump. They also react to U.S. Ambassador to the […]

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Happy Monday! Jim is in a good mood after a Jets win on Sunday and he’s fired up for all three martinis. First, Jim and Greg applaud FedEx CEO Fred Smith for fighting back against smears from the New York Times that accused his company of evading taxes thanks to the recent tax reforms. They […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Member Post

 

One of the things I like about “TheConservativeTreehouse” is that the site provides source material for most important things in the news. In addition to a video, there is usually a transcript included. Yesterday (I think), Attorney General Bill Barr gave a speech to the Federalist Society where his topic was the Constitution’s approach to […]

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It’s a no-filter Friday on the Three Martini Lunch. Jim and Greg start by reacting to the Roger Stone convictions before even starting their martinis. Then they shake their heads as President Trump goes on a Twitter rant against former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovonovitch while she’s testifying on Capitol Hill and Adam Schiff […]

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Is there any Democrat who won’t run for president at some point this year? Today, Jim and Greg dissect the eleventh hour campaign of former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick and the message he’s sending to the other Dems in the race by launching a campaign now. They also sigh as they realize the impeachment process […]

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Jim is back! Join us for the Tuesday edition of the Three Martini Lunch as he and Greg get a kick out of candidates like Kamala Harris and Amy Klobuchar playing the race and gender cards against Democratic primary voters to explain why their campaigns are struggling. They also roll their eyes at reports that […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Unconstitutional Medicare-for-All

 

Senator Elizabeth Warren’s Medicare-for-All (MfA) proposal, which calls for $20.5 trillion in new taxes on everyone but the middle class (ahem), has generated fierce political controversy that threatens to upend the Democratic presidential primary. Economic critiques of her MfA program on the left and the right are a dime a dozen. Yet surprisingly, there has been a stunning silence on the possible constitutional challenges that could be raised against the program. But because other variations of the MfA program may yet be introduced, including one by Senator Bernie Sanders, it is better to think through these issues in advance.

In general, there are two kinds of constitutional objections that that can be raised against any federal program—those based on claims that the program violates federalism, and those concerned with the protection of religious and economic liberties. Dealing with these various issues depends critically on one’s basic approach to constitutional interpretation—whether one adopts a New Deal jurisprudence or a classical liberal one. Under the earlier classical liberal view, all government action was viewed with suspicion. The dominant attitude sought to slow down adventurous legislation. Speaking generally, statutes that strengthened common law interest in property and contract were favored.

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Thanks for joining the Three Martini Lunch today. Once again, Rob Long of National Review and Ricochet is sitting in for Jim. Today, we celebrate the resignation of socialist Bolivian dictator Evo Morales and notice how very sad the mainstream media and far left politicians are that Morales is no longer in power. They also […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Flynn Persecution: “You Can’t Make This Stuff Up” Update

 

Every time you think things cannot possibly get any nuttier in The Swamp, something like this comes up and you slowly and painfully realize there is just no bottom to the depths to which the creatures inhabiting that very dark place will go to get their prey, similar to the instincts of the dwellers of the real swamps of my home state, the alligator and the water moccasin. Here is a tweet from the amazing and doggedly aggressive Sidney Powell, Esq. Gen. Flynn’s new lawyer (Thank God!) remarking on an astonishing report by the prosecution of a “little” “mix-up” in identifying the authors of the reports of his infamous interview on which the entire prosecution was based:

#VanGrack just advised by letter that he got the authors of the raw notes backwards!! Since March 2018 when first disclosed! All the more reason to require originals of everything without redactions, handwriting samples, all 302s, audit trail, metadata-entire file!

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Jim is on vacation but there’s still plenty of fireworks on Thursday’s Three Martini Lunch. Greg is joined by Chad Benson, host of “The Chad Benson Show.” Today, they get a kick out Bill Gates wondering just how much of his money Elizabeth Warren wants and concluding a conversation with Warren might not be worth […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Warrencare

 

Elizabeth Warren recently rolled out her new “Medicare-for-All” plan with the strong claim that “Health Care Is A Basic Human Right.” She then backed up that claim with a story about how, when she was in middle school, her father had a heart attack and their health care expenditures nearly cost her family its home. From those two observations, she has crafted her massive entitlement system which will, when the dust settles, collapse. It will fail as individuals become unable to receive timely health care, and it will exacerbate the dislocations that plagued the Warren family. Why? Because her two points represent the worst way to think about health care, both on the revenue side and on the expenditure side.

On the first point, the stirring claim that health care is a “right” obscures all references to correlative duties. Under classical legal thought, a right to health care referred to the ability of a person to take his own money and spend it on health care with whatever health care providers that he chose. The correlative duties on the rest of the world were not to fund his care but to stand aside and let those contracts go forward as the parties chose. As in all areas of human endeavors, voluntary transactions normally generate gains for both sides. In health care markets, families and individuals are often unsure what contracts to make or why. But their best cure is to hire agents who can fill their knowledge gap, whether as personal advisors, employers, cooperatives, or religious or social groups.

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After a surprisingly brief venting about how bad their football teams are, Jim and Greg serve up three good martinis. They welcome New York Times polling showing Warren as the weakest major Democratic candidate against President Trump and an NYT editorial blasting Warren for falsely claiming that only billionaires would see higher taxes in her […]

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Another day, another round of all good martinis. After a brief analysis of the Washington Nationals winning the World Series, Jim and Greg enjoy watching the Kamala Harris presidential campaign suffer its worst poll numbers yet and shrink the campaign staff to save its dwindling resources. They also marvel at the stratospheric approval numbers of […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Kafkaesque Persecution of Gen. Flynn

 

“Someone must have been telling lies about Josef K., he knew he had done nothing wrong but, one morning, he was arrested.”

Thus begins The Trial by Franz Kafka, one of the most frightening of all dystopian novels. This novel foretold the nightmare which surely follows from the totalitarian takeover of all aspects of life including, in this case, the legal system and the Courts. It is one of many such tales from the chamber of horrors which make up this genre, such as, for only one example, Orwell’s 1984, which cause us to express thoughts like “it Couldn’t Happen Here”, which, as it happens, is the title of another novel of this same kind, by Sinclair Lewis. His novel is said to be roughly based on the career of “The Kingfish”, Huey Long, of our home state, and we can assure you Gov. Long could and did, happen in the Great State of Louisiana. Actually, one might say “it” happened twice, as his younger brother followed him later in the Governor’s office.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. New York’s Pipeline Fiasco

 

New York faces serious energy shortages today, largely due to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s insistence on banning fracking and blocking construction of new pipelines to import cheap natural gas from outside the state. He hopes to wean the state off of fossil fuels, which are said to drive global warming. Though the evidence concerning global warming and its deleterious consequences is quite thin, let’s assume, for the sake of argument, that the dire predictions of climate disaster are correct. If so, it becomes even more imperative to pick both the right sources of energy and the right way to get them to market. Solar and wind are too erratic to do the job, so we have to depend on some form of fossil fuel. Natural gas is high on that list. Unfortunately, the retrograde environmental policies of politicians like Cuomo is a key reason why New York faces an escalating energy predicament.

Today’s deep fear of climate change unthinkingly translates into abiding hostility toward any new technology for extracting and shipping fossil fuels. This regressive approach gets it backwards. As a rule of thumb, every new technological breakthrough results in higher levels of production with lower levels of risk. Therefore, it follows that we should encourage the displacement of old technology to capture these gains. The ideal way to proceed considers both the amount of pollution taken out of circulation and the amount of pollution added.

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Another day with two good martinis! Join Jim and Greg as they celebrate U.S. forces killing another top ISIS official who may have been the successor to al-Baghdadi. They’re also pleasantly surprised to see Arizona Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema frustrating party leaders for taking a moderate approach on several issues and opposing an end to […]

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But if there is such a test and you took it and you got into a Turkish law school, I bet that’s stimulating! I had the idea of writing about Chinese law, but the combination of (1) knowing nothing about it and (2) doubting it is even knowable is not a good one. How the […]

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