Tuesday, February 22, 2022

NATO Has Run Out of Gas

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The upcoming polar plunge will cause temperatures across the northern United States to drop by as much as 50 degrees, during a time when war may break out in Europe. This is a reminder of how important affordable American energy sources are.

Europe is weak because it is in the grip of an energy crisis with some prices soaring tenfold in the last two years. Europe depends for nearly 30% of its oil and gas supplies on Russia, while German manufacturing is particularly dependent for energy on Russia after environmentalists forced Germany to dismantle all 17 of its nuclear power plants that did not even contribute to any climate change.

So the announcement this weekend that there would be no pre-invasion sanctions against Russia was not a surprise. If Russia further rations its energy shipments, Europe may struggle to survive a harsh winter.

Trump achieved oil independence for the United States for the first time in more than a half-century, but Biden has tried to make us dependent on foreign oil again. Biden reinstated Obama’s phony “social cost of carbon” that places a prohibitively high estimated cost on each ton of carbon dioxide released by an energy-related activity.

There is no credible evidence supporting such a “social cost of carbon,” which the good Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry has appropriately referred to as “voodoo economics.” He points out that Congress has never authorized the Environmental Protection Agency to issue regulations based on such an arbitrary estimate.

Louisiana prevailed on February 11 by persuading a federal court there to order the Biden Administration to stop using this imaginary concept to interfere with oil and gas drilling. Our country depends on new drilling to ensure our continued energy independence, and to supply our allies so that they are not dependent on Russia.

Louisiana was joined by Attorneys General representing the states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, South Dakota, Texas, West Virginia, and Wyoming. Other states that are not big energy suppliers, such as Missouri, probably also agree with this legal challenge. Trump-appointed federal district judge James Cain sided with the states, and the Biden Administration vowed to appeal. But the conservative U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans is unlikely to reverse this good decision.

Indeed, this is the second federal judge to rule against the interference with energy production by the Biden Administration. Last year another federal judge in Louisiana ordered Biden to allow gas and oil drilling to move forward.

With gasoline prices skyrocketing to $5 per gallon in some parts of our country, and more than $7.50 per gallon in England, environmentalists’ interference with energy production is causing poverty and inflation. As Trump mocked liberals at one of his rallies this year, a debatable slight future rise in sea levels is not a valid reason to block American energy production and use now.

But rather than comply with the court ruling on Friday, the Biden Administration responded by suspending all new permits and leases for oil and gas drilling on all federal lands. As the federal government owns nearly half of all the land in 11 energy-rich western states, Biden’s moratorium on drilling essentially halts new energy production.

Overall, the federal government purports to own 640 million acres of land in our country, and its interference with energy development on that land is what drives up our energy costs and dependency on foreign suppliers. We can survive without foreign energy, thanks to Trump, but our allies cannot.

Biden’s suspension of all new drilling on federal land is as shocking as if Biden were to block the midterm elections because he did not like a judge’s ruling about it. The federal judge in Louisiana should respond by holding Biden in contempt of court.

Immediately a U.S. Senator from Wyoming, Cynthia Lummis, criticized Biden for interfering with the economy in her energy-producing state. Liz Cheney (R-WY) purports to be the congresswoman representing that same state, but she failed to speak out as Sen. Lummis did.

Sen. Lummis pointed out that Biden “has prioritized the agenda of radical environmentalists in his administration over the needs of people in Wyoming and the rest of the country.” She added that the Biden Administration made “a conscious decision to continue to attack Wyoming and our domestic energy industry in favor of progressive, unrealistic climate policies.”

Gasoline prices have increased 18 times in the last 20 days in San Diego County, California. But rather than address that by allowing new drilling, Biden blusters that NATO will inflict tremendous hardship on energy exporter Russia despite Europe’s dependency on it for energy. The real “social cost of carbon” is an unnecessary dependency on foreign countries for energy. A NATO that has run out of gas is useless to protect America’s values and interests.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Monday, February 21, 2022

Democrats try to Revive the ERA

A St. Louis Post-Dispatch editorial:
As galling as it might sound that even in 2022, a handful of Republican senators have moved to make sure the ERA isn’t stamped into law, there are in fact some remaining issues that need to be resolved. ...

Opponents also make some of the usual histrionic arguments that earlier generations made against the amendment: That it would tear down gender barriers, outlawing separate bathrooms and other public accommodations, a silly scare tactic.

No, not silly. Leftists are indeed trying to tear down those gender barriers.

Tuesday, February 15, 2022

Exploiting the Vacuum in U.S. Leadership

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Barely a year into the Democrats’ experiment of installing the hapless Joe Biden as president, crises inevitably unfold. Nobody believes that Biden can put out the fires that are being lit around the world.

Foreign leaders may perceive the next three years as an opportunity to get away with mischief that would never occur under the strong leadership of President Trump. “Politics abhors a vacuum” is the cliche that accurately describes how bad things happen when there is a void in leadership as there is now.

In our large northern neighbor of Canada, a 21st-century version of martial law was just imposed by a petty tyrant who should have resolved the trucker convoy dispute without placing the entire nation under house arrest. The western provinces of Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan and the eastern city of Quebec all oppose Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s never-before invocation of the draconian Emergencies Act to deal with peaceful protesters having legitimate grievances.

This dictatorial Canadian law authorizes the government to seize bank accounts and compel individuals and private companies to crack down against peaceful protesters. The long-term damage wrought by this infringement on civil liberties in our most important neighbor is immeasurable and could spill over into our own country.

Perhaps Biden is so quiet about the emerging dictatorship in Canada because his advisers would like to see him do likewise here. After all, Biden himself ordered private employers to impose his vaccine mandate, until the Supreme Court stopped Biden in a 6-3 vote.

In 1959 Americans were understandably alarmed when a Communist seized power in Cuba and installed a brutal dictatorship on the island just 90 miles off the coast of Florida. Canada is even closer, across a border that is the longest in the world, and a progressive takeover there could cause great damage to our country.

With his unprecedented invocation of Canada’s Emergencies Act, Trudeau asserts the power to control domestic travel, command services deemed essential, control the distribution of goods, and impose hefty fines on his own citizens. Like the inhumane retaliation against January 6th protesters by House Democrats, which included imprisonment in solitary confinement without trial, Canada’s Liberals seem bent on doing likewise to peaceful truckers.

The widespread, heartfelt public support of the truckers is obvious from the volunteer help they have received, and from the outpouring of donations. The retaliation by internet trolls who publicly disclose small donors’ identities is shocking, and such invasions of privacy and harassment should be prosecuted.

At the pricey Super Bowl, celebrities brazenly violated the mask mandate on national television, yet punishment of them is not even suggested by Democrats.

Instead the regime picks on working truckers, many of whom brought their entire families in their coaches while enduring the frigid February temperatures up north.

In a recent Maru poll, only 16% of Canadians say they would vote again for Trudeau, while Biden’s average net approval/disapproval rating has fallen to -11% across all major polls. Yet as in the United States, the Canadian media has protected Trudeau and failed to report fully on the events.

For example, it was the New York Post that reported last week how cameras caught an Antifa-affiliated Canadian hitting and injuring four peaceful protesters with his Jeep before speeding off in an attempt to escape. He then ran several stoplights and resisted arrest before finally being captured by Winnipeg police, yet the major media continue to falsely portray the truckers as criminals.

Instead of helping defuse the tyranny in our next-door neighbor and most important trading partner, Biden is focusing his diminished mental capacity on a complex situation halfway around the world between Russia and Ukraine, involving a territorial dispute of little significance to America. Biden cannot possibly understand or navigate that conflict, and Ukrainian leaders themselves have criticized Biden’s unhelpful rhetoric.

The terrifying calls by the Biden Administration for all Americans to leave the large country of Ukraine is odd when many Americans live peacefully in Russia. There does not seem to be any reason to expect that Russians would mistreat Americans in Ukraine, in contrast with Biden’s botched evacuation of Afghanistan to allow the anti-American Taliban to seize control.

Liberals are intensely anti-Russia for reasons having nothing to do with Ukraine, such as Putin’s conservative social policies.

At Trump’s Arizona rally last month, he observed that none of these crises would be happening if he were still in the White House. Trudeau was one of the foreign leaders who tried to ridicule Trump, when instead Trudeau should have tried to learn from him.

It was the Ukrainian-born member of the Deep State, Alexander Vindman, who sparked the first impeachment of Trump, and who recently sued Donald Trump Jr., Rudy Giuliani, and other Trump supporters. Yet apparently Ukraine fared far better under Trump than under Biden.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, February 8, 2022

Vax Mandates Must Go

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Amid weeks of the courageous trucker-led Freedom Convoy protest in Canada, many expected its liberal politicians to compromise by now on their vaccine mandates for travel. But mandatory vaccination gives officials so much power that they are unwilling to let go of it.

Vaccine mandates give liberals control over travel, employment, freedom of speech, and even our schoolchildren. Already there are laws in Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. that authorize controversial Covid vaccination of schoolchildren without parental consent, or even informing parents that injections were done on their children.

The District of Columbia’s Minor Consent for Vaccinations Amendment Act of 2020 authorizes school officials to vaccinate children as young as 11 years without parental knowledge. The law even instructs insurance companies to hide the procedure on their otherwise required Explanation of Benefits form, thereby concealing from parents what was done to their own children.

The vaccine mandates do not cease with the Covid pandemic. Liberals have long sought to end parental authority over children “beyond the threshold of the school door,” as the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals proclaimed in 2005 and reaffirmed in 2020. Vaccine mandates under the guise of public health attain that Leftist goal, and far more.

In contrast with their stubbornness on vaccines, Democrats are starting to yield on their mask mandates and lockdowns, with even the New Jersey governor announcing an end to his school mask requirements beginning March 7. A new study from Johns Hopkins shows that the lockdowns were harmful rather than helpful.

While the Left retreats on masks and lockdowns, they will never retreat on vaccine mandates. It required a 6-3 decision by the Supreme Court last month against Biden’s employer mandate before he withdrew that, without admitting he was wrong.

Joe Rogan has sometimes offended with his hugely popular podcast, which has a bigger audience than cable news channels, but his questioning of the Covid vaccine is what forced him to retreat with a flurry of apologies. On Monday night Donald Trump urged Rogan “to stop apologizing to the Fake News and Radical Left maniacs and lunatics.”

In Rogan’s December 30 interview of Robert Malone, M.D., the respected scientist likened mass vaccination to “mass formation psychosis,” in which “anybody who questions” the prevailing narrative is attacked. Liberals forced removal of that podcast from Spotify and YouTube, but Rep. Troy Nehls (R-TX) placed a transcript in the Congressional Record where Nancy Pelosi has not censored it.

The independent spirit of truckers is a godsend, and their protest against Canada’s vaccine mandate has survived the chilly winter temperatures and bone-chilling politicians. After millions of dollars were donated but blocked by liberal-controlled GoFundMe, millions more have been contributed to the truckers through the Christian alternative, GiveSendGo.

Leftwing Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who got his job based on the name recognition of his father, has smeared fellow Canadians as perpetrating “racist, misogynistic attacks” when they oppose his policies. The truckers responded by calling out the cowardly Trudeau, who fled the capital to hide from the truckers in an undisclosed location.

“We dare you, Trudeau, to come and speak to us to our faces,” said an activist named Wendy, who was interviewed by Breitbart News during a Freedom Convoy demonstration. At a press conference yesterday, a trucker commented on how the police, ordered to make arrests, were too embarrassed to look the truckers in the eye.

There is, of course, nothing “racist” or “misogynist” about opposing the vaccine mandates, which are opposed by many minorities and women truckers, too. The latest data indicate that nearly 40% of Americans have declined to be fully vaccinated against Covid, despite all the pressure.

The government database known as the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, or VAERS, skyrockets each month and now totals more than 22,000 deaths, more than 100,000 hospitalizations, and more than a million injuries after the Covid vaccine. Peer-reviewed publications confirm vaccine-related harm.

Just two weeks ago, for example, the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) admitted that “the risk of myocarditis after receiving mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccines was increased” and “was highest after the second vaccination dose in adolescent males and young men. This risk should be considered in the context of the benefits of COVID-19 vaccination.”

The lead author on that paper about myocarditis, which is a serious heart condition, is Matthew Oster, M.D., who works at the CDC. Meanwhile, the CEO of a $100 billion life insurance company announced that deaths among working age (18-64) people are up 40% over pre-pandemic levels, which is the biggest increase in mortality in the history of life insurance.

Democrats should take notice, and end the vaccine passports being required in several American cities. We’re overcoming Covid on our own, and we need to overcome the Leftist mindset too.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

A Pandemic of Censorship

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

We'll survive the Covid pandemic, but the pandemic of liberal censorship is more worrisome. From the attempt to browbeat the popular Joe Rogan into silence, to a flight attendant demanding removal of a "Let's Go Brandon" mask, the thought police are causing permanent harm.

"This is not America anymore," observed passenger Adam Radogna after he was censored on board a Spirit Airlines airplane in Ohio traveling to Florida. He was required by a flight attendant to replace his mask on board because it had the humorous anti-Biden phrase on it along with the initials FJB.

No passenger would have been told to replace a mask having a Black Lives Matter slogan, and he’s right to point out the double standard. Incidents of censorship on airplanes and other places of public accommodation no longer go unnoticed, thanks to video cameras on smartphones.

Meanwhile, podcaster Joe Rogan is more popular than Joe Biden according to a recent poll, but liberals insist on eliminating his podcasts from Spotify. In an alarming new form of censorship, a few aging musicians demanded removal of their songs from Spotify in protest of Rogan.

Spotify then tried to appease the critics of Rogan, and he responded in a gracious manner. But disclaimers and apologies are never enough to appease liberals who demand censorship of alternative views with which they disagree.

Twitter and Facebook found that only a complete removal of President Donald Trump from their platforms would mollify his opponents. And even that was not enough, as the large social media platforms have gone far beyond Trump’s postings in censoring free speech.

Supposedly protecting public health from Covid-19 was initially the pretext. But as Rogan points out, “Many of the things that we thought of as ‘misinformation’ just a short while ago are now accepted as fact.”

The man-made origin of Covid, for example, was considered misinformation but has since been accepted by Fauci and others as possibly or probably true. The ineffectiveness of cloth masks has likewise gone from misinformation to accepted fact, according to authorities.

Predictably, the censorship has gone beyond Covid, and now extends to merely questioning the integrity of an election. Joe Biden can publicly declare the upcoming midterm elections to be illegitimate unless a Biden-favored election bill is enacted, but he faces no censorship for his unfounded predictions that voting rights are at risk in Georgia.

When a conservative casts doubt about the validity of the last election, the social media giants go into instant battle mode to censor those opinions. Conservative congressmen are silenced by Big Tech, while Leftist politicians can post their content without interference.

Rep. Billy Long (R-MO) is a pro-Trump candidate for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO). Last week Long uploaded his ad observing that Donald Trump “made America great, but the Democrats rigged the election.”

Rep. Long promises to “stop the Democrats from stealing another election.” This is what many Republican and independent voters want, and they have a constitutional right to hear a candidate promise it.

Yet YouTube took down Rep. Long’s video to prevent Americans from viewing it. This has nothing to do with protecting public health, combating Covid-19, or the activities at the Capitol on January 6th which Democrats misname as an insurrection.

Rep. Long responded, “This behavior by YouTube is un-American and straight from the communist playbook. Removing my ad proves my point that Big Tech certainly has and will continue to influence elections.”

He hits upon the irony that political speech is being censored supposedly to advance democracy. Democracy is undermined when Big Tech selectively blocks speech it disfavors while allowing liberal rants.

The never-ending investigation of Trump by the district attorney in Fulton County, Georgia also undermines democracy as Democrats attempt to deprive the American people of their right to elect Trump to a second term. Never-Trumpers hope that there will be an unprecedented and unjustified prosecution of Trump, in order to interfere with his increasingly likely candidacy for president in two years.

At his massive rally Saturday night outside Houston, Trump described how top attorneys at a liberal law firm have volunteered to help the Manhattan District Attorney investigate him. Such investigations should be impartial and it was shocking to hear Trump explain that his enemies have ganged up against him under the guise of a state investigation.

All this conduct by Democrats is anti-democratic. Voters should pick the next president without false, unproven accusations by a mere county district attorney being given any headlines.

Earlier this month YouTube received a letter from 80 self-described “fact-checking” organizations demanding that it censor more postings. It is “proving insufficient,” using their wording, to appease the Left that will never be satisfied until they control or influence nearly all content posted on the internet.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.