Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Government Unions Should Bear Their Share

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Government unions should not be shifting the costs of the shutdowns to the laid-off employees of private businesses. Yet that is the approach sought by Democratic governors of large states as they demand massive bailouts of their government workers who have sat idly by.

Public schools are closed throughout the country, and their bloated bureaucrats have enjoyed an extended vacation at home. They should not receive paychecks, at public expense, which are being denied to waitresses, manicurists, and hair stylists.

The sooner everyone is allowed to get back to work, the better. But in the meantime it is terribly unfair to shift the burden of being out of work from government workers’ unions onto the backs of those who toil for less money and pensions in the private sector.

Yet that is what liberal Democratic governors seek by demanding massive federal bailouts for their state and local governments. Public school teachers and other government workers should be bearing an equal amount of loss from the work stoppage, rather than being propped up by extraordinary handouts.

While businesses have laid off or furloughed millions of workers, Democrat-controlled “blue” states have not. We should be hearing less news about private businesses having to let go of their workers, and more news about blue state governors needing to trim their oversized bureaucracies.

“Why should the people and taxpayers of America be bailing out poorly run states … and cities, in all cases Democrat run and managed, when most of the other states are not looking for bailout help?” Trump aptly tweeted on Monday.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell suggested that the poorly run states be allowed to file for bankruptcy, but that is not the answer either. That approach would reward those in control and a pile of attorneys, while leaving creditors holding the bag on defaulted loans and diminishing the ability of other states to obtain favorable credit.

Instead, liberals should cut state and local spending, which is something they have never been willing to do. The belt-tightening should include scaling back the luxurious pensions for state workers at taxpayer expense.

McConnell is right to take the position that “there’s not going to be any desire on the Republican side to bail out state pensions by borrowing money from future generations.” Government employees have no greater entitlement to paychecks for not working.

Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is suggesting an income guarantee for every American. But instead of trying to put everyone on the government payroll, Pelosi and other Democrats should be downsizing the government workforce.

The United States Bankruptcy Code has long prohibited states from filing for bankruptcy to avoid their obligations for the same reasons that many other debts are not dischargeable in personal bankruptcies. Meanwhile new money, such as bailouts, should only be for new services and not for old debt like pensions.

Many of the same states seeking a federal bailout now have repeatedly defied efforts by the Trump Administration to rein in the runaway costs of illegal immigration, for example. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has repudiated federal policy against illegal immigration by issuing drivers’ licenses to attract more illegals.

Now Cuomo declares that McConnell is somehow being “vicious” by opposing handouts to his and similar states. Cuomo epitomizes the entitlement mentality that snaps at whoever objects to sending them more money.

Cuomo failed to protect health care workers in his state, who toiled on behalf of coronavirus patients without the benefits of proper masks or access to prophylactic use of hydroxychloroquine. Cuomo insisted on placing people infected with COVID-19 in nursing homes where it quickly spread and unnecessarily killed many thousands of elderly residents.

Meanwhile Cuomo has failed to take fiscally responsible measures in trimming expenses of state government, even though millions of workers for small businesses have been laid off. Families of laid-off workers should not be required to pay for Cuomo’s state employees to do little at home.

Nor should liberal governors be allowed to stiff lenders who have supported their states with loans, which would result from giving states a right to file for bankruptcy. Rather, governors should realize that their wells are going to run dry if they continue to pay illegal aliens and others full entitlements and salaries as though nothing has happened.

McConnell kept funding for state governments out of the most recent bailout bill, which Trump signed into law last Friday. Resistance to these bills is growing, and congressmen are recognizing that their constituents do not want an endless stream of trillion-dollar “stimulus” packages.
Biden, whose mind seems as quarantined as his body, scoffs at the $2 trillion spending bill by saying it is not nearly enough. His promises to spend far more in exploitation of this crisis must be rejected.

These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Don’t Bail Out the Shutdown States

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

A proposal by two senators to send $500 billion to state governments, due to the coronavirus, would be a horrible incentive. It would encourage governors to keep their economies closed despite their losses in tax revenues from the lack of business activity.

Some Republican-led states have courageously reopened or remained open for business, and their money should not be taken and sent to mostly Democrat-controlled states who ordered people to stop working. States should have an incentive to reopen, as the Republican Governor Brian Kemp of Georgia is doing, rather than receiving bailouts to remain closed.

Yet Senators Bob Menendez (D-NJ) and Bill Cassidy (R-LA) want to appropriate a half-trillion dollars to state governments in addition to the $150 billion which the last bailout bill sent to them. These handouts to state governments would remove the fiscal pressure to reopen their economies.

Under Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy, New Jersey has impeded access to early and prophylactic treatment for COVID-19 in non-hospitalized patients, resulting in avoidable deaths from the virus. Gov. Murphy has also infringed on the rights of protesters who demand that the overly broad shutdown end.

New Jerseyan Kim Pagan faces up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine for merely organizing a protest, which is a constitutional right, against the suffocating stay-at-home order by Gov. Murphy. State governments should bear their own losses as their own governors fail to protect constitutional rights while continuing these oppressive shutdowns.

Availability of early and preventive use of medication to guard against harm by the coronavirus would enable all states to safely open. Yet Democratic governors continue to block access to life-saving medication such as hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), and deny its use until a coronavirus victim is hospitalized near death and cannot be saved by any treatment.

Democratic Gov. Murphy has prohibited early access by requiring a positive test result on all prescriptions for HCQ, which many credit for helping them recover from COVID-19 if used early. A new study of 973 patients in France showed remarkably better results for patients who were given HCQ as an early treatment along with azithromycin.

The researchers conclude that HCQ medication “is a safe and efficient treatment for COVID-19,” yet it remains blocked for millions of Americans exposed to or infected by the virus. Nursing home residents are sitting ducks for this virus as they are denied this medication until they get too sick for any medication to help them.

Growing protests at state capitols illustrate how badly governors, mostly Democrats, have handled this crisis. President Trump himself has expressed support for the protesters, and has voiced his own objections to the ongoing interference with our economy by Democratic governors.

Meanwhile, non-coronavirus patients are being denied medical procedures and treatments which they need. Health care workers are being laid off throughout the country because ordinary medical care has been prohibited by the shutdown orders.

Massive bailouts to hospitals send them money for not being available to the public. These create the wrong incentive of perpetuating the shutdowns rather than allowing healthy economic pressure to force reopening.

President Trump could invoke his emergency powers to override state governors who interfere with our economy and block access to needed medical treatments. If we were in a conventional war, the president would prohibit interference by state officials with war-related efforts.

Yet some Democratic governors seem to be driven by ego rather than doing what is best for their residents. New York’s Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo is in a nasty spat with the Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York City over who gets to decide if public schools there will remain closed for the rest of the school year.

In 1992, Democratic Governor Lawton Chiles of Florida blocked efforts by President George H.W. Bush to help victims of Hurricane Andrew, which ravaged that state shortly before the presidential election. President Bush then stood down and was predictably blamed by the media for not doing more, when instead he should have overridden the politically motivated interference.

Today Democratic governors are determined to impede President Trump’s helpful new guidelines for Opening Up America Again. Trump recommends reopening our Nation in three stages, depending on local conditions, and urges all 50 states to begin implementing Phase One immediately.

Trump’s guidelines are merely recommendations, so Democrats have an election-year political incentive to undermine them as much as they can. Trump has repeatedly warned that the cure would be worse than the disease if “the greatest economy in the history of our country” is damaged beyond repair, but Democrats seem unconcerned.

Trump is working daily to restore the old normal, where Americans had no fear of crowding together in restaurants, bars, and sports stadiums. Federal funds should not be sent to Democratic governors who resist reopening.

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 pseagles.com.

Friday, April 17, 2020

Phyllis’s deep impact on contemporary politics

An essay in The Atlantic, a liberal magazine, about the new Hulu TV series:
We’re Living in Phyllis Schlafly’s America
A striking new miniseries reveals the conservative author’s deep impact on contemporary politics.

If, as per baudelaire, the greatest trick the devil played was convincing the world that he didn’t exist, the irony of Phyllis Schlafly’s legacy is that she undermined women so efficiently that her pernicious influence on American politics hasn’t gotten the credit it deserves. During the 1970s, Schlafly was camera-ready pith in pearls and a pie-frill collar, a troll long before the term existed, who’d begin public speeches by thanking her husband for letting her attend, because she knew how much it riled her feminist detractors. Armed only with a newsletter and a seeming immunity to shame, Schlafly took a popular bipartisan piece of legislation—the Equal Rights Amendment, which affirms men and women as equal citizens under the law—and whipped it up into a culture war as deftly as if she were making dessert.

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Leftist Tyrants Exploit Shutdowns

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

It did not take long for leftist tyrants to exploit shutdown orders in mostly Democratic states. From Michigan to Kentucky to California and even to Texas, public officials are abusing their authority to infringe on fundamental rights of Americans.

The Democratic Governor of Kentucky, Andy Beshear, was promoted into office by the liberal media as a kinder, gentler alternative to his conservative predecessor, Matt Bevin. But as many on the right anticipated, Beshear is a tyrant in sheep’s clothing as he bullies the large evangelical community there.

Beshear declared that churchgoers on Easter Sunday would have their license plates recorded and be required to quarantine for daring to attend a service on that special day. This First Amendment-infringer then tweeted out a picture of his family enjoying the sunny day outside, illustrating his hypocrisy.

On Fire Christian Church sought and obtained a temporary restraining order (TRO) against the City of Louisville to prohibit it from interfering with drive-in church services on Easter. The federal judge who issued this order in favor of religious liberty, Justin Walker, has been nominated by President Trump to the influential D.C. Circuit.

Another Democratic governor, whom the President calls “Half” Whitmer, has become a tyrant in Michigan. There, however, an intense backlash has initiated a recall petition drive which has already attracted hundreds of thousands of signatures.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen “Half” Whitmer has gone so far as to order people to stay in their “main” home, which prohibits them from traveling to and taking care of their many cabins and cottages which line the Great Lakes of Michigan, Huron, and Superior. A state fond of boating and fishing has become a totalitarian society more like North Korea or Cuba.

In California, seven young people not expected to be vulnerable to the virus got together for some harmless drinks Saturday night in Santa Cruz and were slapped with tickets totaling $7,000 in fines. Further south, off Malibu, a man was arrested merely for using his paddle board far from anyone else.

Contrast all this with Republican South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem and her highly effective way of handling the Wuhan virus, which causes COVID-19. Governor Noem, like eight other Republican governors, has kept her state open throughout this crisis, relying on freedom and responsibility to combat the virus.

Last night she announced that she has obtained one million doses of hydroxychloroquine for use by her residents, the medication that has been so effective in other countries and in certain locations in the United States in minimizing harm from the disease.

The media have pounced on governors like Noem who have kept their economies running, by printing stories that such policies result in “hot spots” like one supposedly breaking out in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The Washington Post said that this “experience has been harrowing” because a total of 57 new COVID-19 cases recently arose there in one day among workers at a production plant.

But what is “harrowing” is the interference by Democrats with early medication by hydroxychloroquine, an inexpensive, generic drug. Nearly all of the 25,000 Americans who have died from COVID-19 were not allowed access to this medication for early treatment.

A nursing home in Democrat-controlled Washington State suffered 37 fatalities from COVID-19 without using the medication early to combat the disease. In contrast, a nursing home in Republican Texas which suffered a similar outbreak has welcomed and applied the medication, and has suffered only one fatality as reported by NPR.

Even the Governor of Texas, Greg Abbott, has been pandering to the liberal media by imposing an overly broad shutdown of that warm-weather state, which has interfered with necessary medical care such as fixing broken bones or receiving hormonal treatments. Abbott hopes to run for president in 2024 but it is difficult to see why he thinks that shutting down Texas is good for anyone.

Some point out that “flattening the curve” of infections by the virus has the effect of prolonging the pandemic and exposing the public to an inevitable resurgence. Instead, early treatment and the development of herd immunity might be a better way to address this.

But there is little money to be made in early treatment by generic medication or in herd immunity, and no political power to be gained by it. Democratic governors are emboldened by their newfound attention, and they are wrongly attempting to tell President Trump when to reopen the economy, not vice-versa.

Meanwhile, many hospitals are empty and workers have been furloughed due to the blocking of beneficial operations and treatment. In Pennsylvania, Democratic Governor Tom Wolf’s shutdown order has caused the Lehigh Valley Health Network to furlough more than 900 staffers, resulting in the irony of empty hospitals due to overreaching by Democrats in dealing with a pandemic.

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 pseagles.com.

Saturday, April 11, 2020

Most important political organizer in American history

The NY Times reviews the forthcoming Mrs. America Hulu series:
Rick Perlstein, a historian of the American right and the author of the forthcoming book “The Invisible Bridge: The Fall of Nixon and the Rise of Reagan,” called Schlafly “probably the most brilliant and important political organizer in American history.”

What Schlafly understood, Blanchett said, was that many American women did not see feminism as the answer to their problems.

“Women who had been working, in a traditional way, in the home, felt judged and marginalized,” Blanchett said. “They felt that they had been told by the feminists that they were less-than.” Schlafly harnessed this contempt with great success. But she was never able to gain a foothold in the Republican establishment.

“Mrs. America” paints its leading lady not as a villain but a plausible female version of that hoariest of contemporary TV conventions: the antihero.
The show will release the first three episode April 15 on Hulu.

Most important political organizer in American history

The NY Times reviews the forthcoming Mrs. America Hulu series:
Rick Perlstein, a historian of the American right and the author of the forthcoming book “The Invisible Bridge: The Fall of Nixon and the Rise of Reagan,” called Schlafly “probably the most brilliant and important political organizer in American history.”

What Schlafly understood, Blanchett said, was that many American women did not see feminism as the answer to their problems.

“Women who had been working, in a traditional way, in the home, felt judged and marginalized,” Blanchett said. “They felt that they had been told by the feminists that they were less-than.” Schlafly harnessed this contempt with great success. But she was never able to gain a foothold in the Republican establishment.

“Mrs. America” paints its leading lady not as a villain but a plausible female version of that hoariest of contemporary TV conventions: the antihero.
The show will release the first three episode April 15 on Hulu.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Deadly Delay by Dr. Fauci

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

“You go to war with the army you have,” said President Bush’s Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. “Not the army you might want or wish to have at a later time.”

Rumsfeld’s profound words have never been more important, as our nation has been called to war against an unseen enemy, the Chinese coronavirus. It’s time to summon and employ the resources we have today, not wait months or years for more studies, more data, and more proof that a promising medication is safe and effective.

President Trump, our commander-in-chief in the war against the virus, is a man of prompt and decisive action, and he takes pride in signing a “right to try” law in 2018. But he is being hamstrung by a Hillary Clinton-supporting federal bureaucrat named Anthony Fauci whose advice has stymied early, widespread use of hydroxychloroquine against the Wuhan virus.

Dr. Fauci is the George McClellan of the war on the coronavirus. General McClellan, the first commander of Union forces in the Civil War, had to be removed by President Lincoln when he persistently failed to engage the enemy.

Imagine if Fauci had been in charge of the decision to use the atom bomb in 1945. Atomic energy is an unproven technology, he might have exclaimed, while the Japanese continued to slaughter our soldiers, sailors and Marines in the Pacific theater of World War II.

Or think if Fauci had been General Douglas MacArthur’s aide-de-camp during the Korean War, when MacArthur proposed the daring Inchon landing maneuver which conquered the North Korean Army. We need more studies, Fauci might have said, before supporting the amphibious assault behind enemy lines.

Or what if Fauci had been advising General Washington about crossing the Delaware on December 25, 1776. The snow, the waves, the rickety boats, the shortage of proper clothes and shoes, the lack of good intelligence about the enemy camped on the other side -- all these factors needed more study before Fauci could be 100% sure that Washington would succeed.

“These are the times that try men’s souls,” Thomas Paine wrote in his newly published pamphlet that Washington had read aloud to his troops before they boarded the boats on Christmas night. When the survival of your country is at risk and your soldiers are dying on the battlefield, there’s no more time for studies.

No medications have been thoroughly studied in time-consuming clinical trials for any new virus, including COVID-19. But we have solid evidence that a 65-year-old drug called hydroxychloroquine has helped many COVID-19 patients recover, and that it has also prevented many other people from getting the disease.

This medication is already being taken regularly by hundreds of thousands of Americans who suffer from lupus and rheumatoid arthritis. As far as anyone knows, no one has ever died from taking a recommended dose of the drug.

As America’s deaths from the virus exceeded 1,000 in a single day, there is no time for methodical studies to help another thousand COVID-19 patients who may die tomorrow. They should immediately be given the best medication available, whether exhaustively tested to Fauci’s satisfaction or not.

Karen Whitsett, a Michigan state representative, is one survivor who powerfully validates the benefits of hydroxychloroquine, which Dr. Fauci continues to disparage as unproven. A Democrat, she represents a predominantly African-American neighborhood in Detroit which has been ravaged by COVID-19.

“I thank God the president of the United States mentioned that drug because it did save me,” Whitsett said. “If President Trump had not talked about this it wouldn’t have been something that would be accessible for anyone to be able to get right now,” the lawmaker said.

When Whitsett arrived at the hospital with symptoms of the virus, she found that her own governor, a fellow Democrat named Gretchen Whitmer, had issued an order prohibiting the use of hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19 patients. Michigan was one of a number of states that have limited the use of the drug because so-called experts like Dr. Anthony Fauci claim it is unproven.

“I did have a difficult time, even that day, obtaining the medication because of an order that was put down in my state,” said Whitsett. “And it was on that day so you can imagine how terrified I was that I had to beg and plead and go through a whole lot to try to get the medication.”

Within hours of taking her first dose of hydroxychloroquine, Representative Whitsett was already feeling much better. “It has a lot to do with the president,” the lawmaker told The Detroit Free Press. “He is the only person who has the power to make it a priority.”

As Bob Dylan wrote, “how many deaths will it take ’till he knows that too many people have died?” Dr. Fauci should stop blowin’ in the wind.

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 pseagles.com.

Sunday, April 5, 2020

Judge rules in favor of Phyllis's true Eagles

Bloomberg reports:
One nonprofit founded by late conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly didn’t infringe the trademarks of another after the two split over the 2016 presidential election, an Illinois federal court said.

Eagle Forum was formed by Schlafly in 1975 to “support causes related to the modern conservative political ideology.” In 2016, EF’s board of directors was divided as to whether to support Ted Cruz or Donald Trump in the Republican presidential primary. After a falling out, Schlafly and other Trump-supporting board members left to form the nonprofit Phyllis Schlafly’s American Eagles.

EF sued PSAE for allegedly misusing its trademarks, including its registered...
The rest of the article is paywalled.

That is correct. Some rogue Trump-haters took over the political arm (EFc4) of Eagle Forum in 2016, and attempted to oust Schlafly. She was dying, and they believed that her health would prevent her from stopping the takeover, and that she would be dead before any judge ruled on the lawsuit they filed. Now they have burned all the assets on failed legal actions, and are desperately seeking donations to pay legal fees.

The term "Eagles" has been primarily used for those loyal to Phyllis Schlafly. The main Eagle organizations are still firmly in the control of those Eagles. Control of EFc4 depends on a lawsuit that is still pending. The rogue faction that sued Phyllis and EFc4 has used every trick to delay the trial, and postpone a decision on their ridiculous claims.

The above lawsuit was based on the idea that the EFc4 rogue faction somehow owned Phyllis's political activities, and could dictate who she could or could not endorse for President. The whole thing was absurd. Phyllis did not even draw a salary from EFc4, and never took orders from EFc4. She gave orders to EFc4, not the other way around.

The rogue faction not only wanted to kick Phyllis out of EFc4, but also wanted to block her other political activities. The fact is that she was entirely withing her constitutional rights to express any political opinions she wanted.