I am taking a few days off as I have a Urinary Tract Infection with E Coli in my urine.
I am on my fourth round of antibiotics they do not seem to be working so there maybe a hospital stay in my future.
I am taking a few days off as I have a Urinary Tract Infection with E Coli in my urine.
I am on my fourth round of antibiotics they do not seem to be working so there maybe a hospital stay in my future.
H/T Western Journal.
Why are the Chi-Coms sniffing around the Philippine’s?
Even as President Joe Biden assures us that the People’s Republic of China is nothing to worry about, the communist superpower is bearing down on a key United States ally in the Pacific.
China’s gunboat diplomacy is not relying on a few ships to push our allies around either, but an armada of over 200 vessels thought to be part of the country’s maritime militia.
The flotilla was first spotted by the Philippine Coast Guard on March 7, according to The Associated Press, around the area of the Whitsun Reef, a shallow formation in an oceanic area claimed by multiple countries.
The Philippine island of Palawan, some 200 miles from the contested reef, appears to give Manila the most legitimate claim to the fish-rich area.
Nearly 400 miles in the other direction lies Vietnam, another claimant to the reef. Over 650 miles to the north sits the final self-proclaimed owner of the area, China.
While China appears to have the weakest claim to the area, the nation also boasts the largest navy and a numerically and technologically superior fighting force.
Now, it’s putting those deadly advantages to use in trying to strong-arm its way into position as the region’s unquestioned power.
Although China maintains that the hundreds of ships suspiciously perched near the reef are fishing vessels, experts have cast major doubt on that claim.
Comparing the “fishing” boats to silhouettes of other Chinese designs, it quickly becomes apparent that these seemingly harmless boats are something much more sinister.
Andrew Erickson, a professor at the U.S. Naval War College, pointed out that these boats seem identical to Chinese militia ships.
The apparent militia ships are allegedly part of the forces of the so-called Sansha City, a loose collection of islands in the South China Sea all claimed by the communist power.
According to Erickson, the ships are quasi-militarized vessels with water cannons and hulls designed for ramming. The ships, ostensibly on fishing voyages, then embed themselves like ticks around Chinese-claimed territory.
But while China is intent on claiming every bit of undefended reef in their neighboring sea, the Philippines are not so keen to see communists set up shop only a couple hundred miles from its shores.
According to the South China Morning Post, the Philippine Navy has begun “sovereignty patrols” through the area using warships designed for combat, not deception.
While the confrontation has not erupted in violence yet, China’s increasing aggression could mean that it’s only a matter of time before its passive-aggressive strategy is replaced with a more active one.
For now, China is kept in check by a United States Navy that is still invested in the Pacific and an array of countries wary of the growing communist threat.
H/T Western Journal.
DemocRats never let facts stand in the way of their lies about guns.
This can’t be good for the leftist narrative.
As President Joe Biden and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer push for a ban on “assault weapons” and other overreaching gun regulations, the police have identified the weapon used in Monday’s mass shooting in Boulder, Colorado, as a pistol.
In other words, the vague “assault weapons” bans backed by Democrats like Biden and Schumer may not apply to this weapon.
The classification of the suspected shooter’s firearm led to handwringing in the establishment media.
“For the Colorado shooting suspect, the Ruger AR-556 pistol had another benefit: It made purchasing the weapon quick and easy,” USA Today reported.
“A rifle of its same size would have been subject to multiple layers of added scrutiny, including a background check that would have required several forms of ID and even fingerprinting.”
The paper’s reporters lamented that if the suspect had used such a rifle, he “would have had to pay additional taxes and potentially wait months before the gun was registered.”
Leftists, of course, will not be content to ban only “assault weapons.” When the facts of a shooting don’t fit their narrative, their solution is ever-stricter regulations. Leftists will be forced by their own ideology to continue on the gun-control path until the Second Amendment rights our government is charged with protecting are all but gone.
The Democrats’ narrative around the Boulder shooting continues to crumble at their feet. And it’s been happening from the day of the massacre.
The very day the shooting took place, rather than mourn the victims of the tragedy, leftists like Julie DiCaro of Deadspin couldn’t help but politicize the issue and blame white men — without any evidence that a white man had committed the crime.https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=WestJournalism&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-0&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1374203139927183360&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.westernjournal.com%2Fdemocrats-coasting-boulder-shooting-ban-assault-weapons-hit-snag-police-reveal-no-rifle-involved%2F&siteScreenName=WestJournalism&theme=light&widgetsVersion=e1ffbdb%3A1614796141937&width=550px
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Others suggested systemic racism, including activist Amy Siskind, who jumped to the conclusion that since the suspect was taken alive, he was “almost certainly a white man.”
Meanwhile, Democratic politicians — including the president himself — continue to push for vaguely defined weapons bans that possibly or even likely would not have stopped the Boulder shooting
While Democrats will probably just course-correct and find a way to reclassify the suspect’s weapon so that it is no longer an issue, the dismantled narrative does demonstrate a truth most knew from the beginning: Democrats will politicize even tragedies to the extent your constitutional rights are at stake — regardless of the facts they’re confronted with.
It will be interesting to see how the Supreme Court will rule if the case makes the court docket.
A federal appeals court ruled against the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) bump stock ban and confiscation order on Thursday.
The Sixth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled the ATF improperly redefined bump stocks as machine guns in 2018, a move that effectively banned the devices in the aftermath of the Las Vegas shooting that killed dozens. The court ruled the ATF could not redefine the term without new legislation passed by Congress. The majority found bump stocks do not fit under the federal definition of a machine gun.
“We further hold that a bump stock cannot be classified as a machine gun because a bump stock does not enable a semiautomatic firearm to fire more than one shot each time the trigger is pulled,” the court said in the ruling.
The ruling represents the first major win for gun-rights activists in the years-long fight over the bump stock ban. It is the first time an appeals court has ruled against the ban and sets up a showdown that could end up at the Supreme Court.
Philip Van Cleave, president of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, called the win an “important milestone” in defeating the ban. He said his group filed the case alongside Gun Owners of America, the Gun Owners Foundation, and three individual plaintiffs because the ATF redefining what is effectively a plastic stock as a functioning machine gun was a “fantasy.”
“We had to have that victory,” Van Cleave said. “Somebody had to put a stop on the sequence of events that made no sense. We could not let that stand.”
Under direction from then-president Donald Trump, the ATF reversed itself on the legality of bump stocks, which assist a shooter in making individual pulls of the trigger more quickly. The agency had previously ruled the devices do not fall under machine gun regulations in the National Firearms Act of 1934. The law defines machine guns as firearms that continually fire after a “single function of the trigger;” bump stock-equipped semi-automatic guns require the trigger to be pulled before each shot. The ATF decided the devices should be regulated as machine guns.
The agency’s reversal required that all bump stocks be registered with the federal government in order to be legal. But the ATF also ruled the devices were always machine guns and should have been registered when initially purchased. As a result, it became impossible to register the devices under the ATF’s new determination, and owners either had to turn them in, destroy them, or face potential federal felony charges if caught with them.
Since federal courts—including the Supreme Court—declined to issue stays against the ban before it went into effect in 2019, Van Cleave said much of the damage from the ban has already been done. There is no estimate for how many people turned in or destroyed their bump stocks but several manufacturers had to destroy their products and were subsequently bankrupted.
Van Cleave said the coalition of gun groups is continuing to fight the case to combat the possibility of similar actions from the ATF in the future. He said it is “clear that the government was making up an issue out of whole cloth” and the groups do not want to see a repeat. They are planning for an eventual fight at the highest level.
“We’d like to put it on the Supreme Court,” Van Cleave said.
The Biden administration did not respond to a request for comment on the decision. The case will now be sent back down to the lower court with orders to redo the trial.
Why is San Fran Nan so anxious to over turn the win by Republicans in Iowa?
If House Democrats get serious about contesting a tight House election in Iowa, they will have a slush fund at their disposal.
Hidden in the House rules package is a provision for “Further Expenses for Resolving Contested Elections,” a one-year fund lawmakers can tap in their quest to overturn a House election they lost in Iowa.
While members of either party can access the unlimited sums allocated to the fund, only Democrats are contesting an election right now. A provision in the House Democrats’ rules package “authorizes such sums as may be necessary for the Committee on House Administration to resolve contested elections.” Those funds are available for expenses incurred between Jan. 3, 2021, and Jan. 3, 2022. If used, the money would be drawn from legislative branch appropriations funding and would not be publicly disclosed until the end of the quarter.
Democrats have assailed Republicans who voted to contest the 2020 election but are now seriously considering overturning a congressional race they lost that was certified by local officials.
It is unclear whether top Democrats plan to use the fund to contest the election of Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks (R.), who narrowly defeated Democrat Rita Hart by a six-vote margin in November. Democrats are, however, actively working on unseating Miller-Meeks by a House vote and have brought in one of their top lawyers to make their case.
Hart is represented in her bid to unseat Miller-Meeks by Democratic lawyer Marc Elias, who also works for many of the House Democrats who will decide the case. Hart and Elias are taking their case directly to the House Committee on Administration, rather than through the judicial system. Republicans, led by Rep. Rodney Davis (R., Ill.), the ranking member on the Committee on House Administration, wrote about the “serious conflict of interest regarding Marc Elias” earlier this month.
Elias proposed a timeline to resolve the election by July 12, and the legislative provision allows Democrats to pay him from the fund if they so choose. Lawyers from Elias’s firm, Perkins Coie, charged $720 an hour in a 2019 North Carolina case, according to court documents.
Miller-Meeks’s campaign lawyer, Alan Ostergren, told the Washington Free Beacon that Elias’s ties to both Hart and committee Democrats “only highlights the financial entanglements between Rita Hart and Democrats on the Committee on House Administration.”
Davis told the Free Beacon that “not only are Democrats trying to steal a state-certified election from Iowans, where the Democrat candidate didn’t even take her case to court because she knew she would lose, but they’ve created an unlimited fund of their tax dollars to do it.”
In the past week, several key swing Democrats announced their opposition to overturning the Iowa election. Rep. Dean Phillips (D., Minn.), was the first to go on record. “Just because a majority can, does not mean a majority should,” Phillips wrote. Following Phillips’s lead, Democratic representatives from California to New Hampshire began voicing objections.
Pelosi’s office did not respond to a request for comment about the fund.
H/T Town Hall.
Colorado has everything on Joe Pee Pads Biden’s gun wish list and the Bolder shooter passed everything and he was legally able purchased his gun.
Anytime a mass shooting takes place, Democrats and members of the mainstream media make assumptions about why the gunman carried out the attack and how gun control proposals could have prevented the tragedy. The same thing happened following last week’s attack in Boulder, Colorado. As the scene was unfolding, speculation took place and instant calls for anti-Second Amendment legislation were imminent.
One of the biggest claims is that “universal background checks” or “enhanced background checks” could have prevented the gunman from obtaining his firearm. This is flat-out false.
Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa purchased his Ruger AR-556 pistol six days before he carried out the attack at the Kings Soopers store in Boulder. He made the purchase at the Eagles Nest Armory in Arvada, Colorado, Reuters reported.
Alissa purchased his firearm from a Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL), meaning he purchased the firearm legally. He went to a “gun dealer,” filled out a 4473 form – the form that’s used to process a background check through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) – underwent a background check, he passed, and the sale proceeded.
Democrats – including President Joe Biden – are pushing for the Senate to pass H.R. 8 and H.R. 1446, a pair of bills that would expand background checks, meaning a seller would have to undergo a background check, even for private sales.
There are three problems with these calls though: the first is that Colorado has universal background checks. If a person sells their firearm privately, he or she must meet the buyer at an FFL, where the buyer has to fill out the 4473 form and undergo the background check process. Even if Alissa purchased the firearm from a private party (which he didn’t), he would still have to go to an FFL and have a background check run. The state has had this law in place since March of 2013, following the attacks at Sandy Hook.
The second issue: Alissa didn’t have any felony convictions. He had a misdemeanor assault charge on his record for hitting another student when he was a senior in high school, back in 2018. In order to be denied for firearm purchases, a felony conviction has to be on a person’s record. This was a legal transaction. He was not deemed a prohibited possessor at the time of purchase.
The third problem: the gunman was on the FBI’s watch list before the shooting. Did the agency have information that showed he was a threat? Did they have information about a potential attack? Was this another example of the FBI dropping the ball?
Universal background checks sound great on paper, especially to those who are ignorant about firearm policies and legislation, but they do very little to curb “gun violence.” The Boulder shooting is the latest example of where those gun control measures – which proponents guarantee would prevent mass carnage – have failed.
AWR Hawkins from Breitbart listed the other attacks where other gunmen legally obtained through firearms (through background checks conducted at FFLs):
- Atlanta-area attacker (March 16, 2021)
- Parkland high school attacker (February 14, 2018)
- Texas church attacker (November 5, 2017)
- Las Vegas attacker (October 1, 2017)
- Alexandria attacker (June 14, 2017))
- Orlando attacker (June 12, 2016)
- UCLA gunman (June 1, 2016))
- San Bernardino attackers (December 2, 2015)
- Colorado Springs attacker (October 31, 2015)
- Umpqua Community College attacker (October 1, 2015)
- Alison Parker’s attacker (August 26, 2015)
- Lafayette movie theater attacker (July 23, 2015)
- Chattanooga attacker (July 16, 2015)
- Alleged Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal attacker (Jun 17, 2015)
- Muhammad Carton Contest attackers (May 3, 2014)
- Las Vegas cop killers (June 9, 2015)
- Santa Barbara attacker (May 23, 2014)
- Fort Hood attacker (April 2, 2014)
- Arapahoe High School attacker (December 13, 2013)
- D.C. Navy Yard attacker (September 16, 2013)
- Aurora movie theater attacker (July 20, 2012)
- Gabby Giffords’ attacker (January 8, 2011)
- Fort Hood attacker (November 5, 2009)
- Northern Illinois University attacker (February 14, 2008)
- Virginia Tech attacker (April 16, 2007).
What these bills really do is to create a firearms registry. It would mean the government would know exactly who owns what guns moving forward, something Second Amendment supporters believe could lead to firearm confiscation. It also penalizes private party transfers, which typically take place between family and friends, and already regulated. Further legislation would be redundant.
H/T Western Journal.
Everything coming out of Fauci’s mouth is a lie and has zero scientific facts.
If Fauci was to tell me it was dark outside I would go look out a window just to make sure.
Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky this week shredded Dr. Anthony Fauci with regard to masks, vaccinations and government hypocrisy in relation to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
The pair seem to have a budding feud after Paul called out Fauci last week for his mask sensationalism. Paul, whose immune system vanquished the virus nearly a year ago, has made Fauci his target as the pandemic lingers on.
After mocking Fauci for wearing two masks in a Senate hearing, he utterly crushed the health adviser to President Joe Biden on Tuesday.
Speaking to Fox News host Neil Cavuto, Paul — who is himself a doctor — ripped the director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases by labeling him as a “bureaucrat” who is enjoying the spotlight amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“I think the burden should be on government. If the government’s going to tell you you can’t go anywhere unless you’re wearing a mask, they should tell you why. And they should present the evidence,” he said.
Noting that millions of people have been vaccinated, in addition to those who now have immunity to COVID after they’ve beaten the virus, Paul wasted no time going after Fauci.
“See, that’s not science. That’s sort of emotionalism and fear-mongering. And so Dr. Fauci needs to put up or shut up. He needs to show us the scientific evidence that it’s a problem after you have been vaccinated or after you have already gotten the disease naturally,” he said.
“So far, there’s no evidence that there’s widespread disease happening from people who have already had the disease or have already been vaccinated.”
Paul hit Fauci last week for wearing two masks, likening his act to engaging in “theatre.” Tuesday, the senator wasn’t ready to relent with regard to Fauci’s apparent “masks forever” mantra.
“We do what we’re forced to do to live in Dr. Fauci’s world,” Paul said with regard to Fauci’s influence in the ear of coronavirus politics.
Fauci has endorsed the idea of wearing masks, even for those who are seemingly immune to the virus. The doctor has been seen earring two masks, despite the fact that he himself has been immunized.
Paul noted that “someone has to contend with him and show him that his edicts are not based on science,” and he’s apparently more than happy to be that “someone.”
“For example, how many people watching this program have walked into a restaurant, put their mask on for ten feet and seen 400 people look up at you who are all not wearing their mask, all in an enclosure, breathing?” Paul asked.
“Do you think those ten steps of wearing your mask meant anything?” he continued.
“That’s non-science. That basically is someone expressing some sort of form of civility, but has nothing to do with science. You’re on the airplane, you wear a mask, you’re sitting this far from people. And then they say when you get off, we’re going to get off six feet apart now,” he added with regard to nonsensical mandatory air travel mandates.
“I have been sitting next to some guy three inches from me the whole time. But now we’re going to use science,” Paul said. “And he has to go six feet in front of me to get off the plane. None of this is based in science.”
“It’s all emotionalism. And we’re going to be here forever if we keep listening to these people,” Paul said. “The simple fact is if you’ve been vaccinated, and you’re two weeks out from your second one, throw your mask away and do what you want, because Dr. Fauci is overkill on all of this.”
But Paul eviscerated Fauci for his never-ending opinions on the coronavirus and common mitigation efforts which are at odds with the Bill of Rights.
“So far all he’s telling me is his opinion. Really their opinion is — look, they had another one of these vaccine doctors on television, he was like, ‘Oh, it’s about civility.’ Well, civility is not science,” Paul said. “For goodness sakes, show us some evidence to back up these mandates.”
Fauci has now enjoyed a year in the national spotlight while advising on policy and enjoying media popularity. But where former President Donald Trump apparently had to play nice and indulge the camera-happy doctor in an election year, Paul is unrestrained in calling out the absurdity with his ever-changing goalposts.
Fauci, who can’t let go of the pandemic, has seemingly met his match in Paul.
H/T Bearing Arms.
These vicious little animals need to be locked away for the rest of their lives.
A 13-year old and a 15-year old in Washington, D.C. are facing felony murder charges after the pair allegedly held up an Uber driver with a stun gun on Tuesday, causing the driver to crash, sustaining fatal injuries as a result. According to authorities, 66-year old Mohammed Anwar, who immigrated to the United States from Pakistan in 2014, apparently tried to resist the robbery, but ended up losing his life instead of losing his vehicle and his cash.
One of the girls allegedly told Metropolitan Police officers that they both set out with at least one stun gun specifically to steal a car that day, the Washington Post said, citing court testimony from homicide unit Detective Chad Leo.
The older girl is from Fort Washington, Maryland, and the younger from Southeast DC, a local ABC affiliate reported.
Why they allegedly targeted Anwar remained unclear, but the girls got into his car at the Navy Yard Metro station as he made deliveries around 4:30 p.m., Leo said.
Anwar drove with them a short distance to Nationals Park, where witnesses and surveillance video show the dark Honda pull over and an argument and struggle ensuing between the girls and the man, the outlet reported.
Police believe Anwar had partially left the car and was wedged between the door and the driver’s seat as the teenagers allegedly put the vehicle in gear. It lurched forward with Anwar still hanging from it, officials said.
Anwar was fatally flung from the car as it turned right onto N Street SE, officials said. The car then rolled over on its side and crashed into two parked cars, officials said.
Anwar, who leaves behind an extended family, was one of at least two rideshare drivers murdered on Tuesday this week. In Chicago, 46-year old Javier Ramos was shot and killed in a carjacking attempt on the city’s west side.
Relatives said the 46-year-old rideshare driver was killed after they say investigators told them he fought back when a passenger tried to carjack him on the city’s West Side. During the attack, he was shot in the head and face.
The crime took place around 2:30 a.m. Tuesday in the 3700-block of Douglas Avenue, investigators said.
He is survived by his 9-year-old daughter, among others.
“Every single person Javy came in contact with knew the kind of father that he was,” Ramos said. “He lived for his daughter. His joy was his daughter.”
Known as Javy to friends, his family said the entrepreneur was trying to better himself, especially after recovering from a brain aneurysm he had a few years ago.
And while a close-knit community of those who knew and loved Ramos mourn his death, they also don’t want his violent passing to be in vain.
“This could have been anyone’s brother, anyone’s son, anyone’s father, anyone’s cousin,” Hortencia Ramos said.
Anwar and Ramos were both unarmed and in compliance with the policies of Uber at the time of their murders. The rideshare company, along with competitor Lyft, both require that drivers do not carry a firearm while they’re on the clock, even if they’re licensed to do so and in their own vehicle. Violate the policy and you could lose your job, which is what happened to Cleveland, Ohio resident Cynthia Norman earlier this year after she used her legally-owned and carried firearm to defend herself against two carjackers.
If drivers don’t violate the companies’ policies, however, they could easily lose their lives. It’s telling that both Anwar and Ramos apparently tried to fight back while unarmed and lost their lives, while Cynthia Norman is alive today because she was able to fight back with a gun.
These disarmament policies on the part of rideshare companies like Uber simply have to go. I don’t really care if the company’s liability insurance would increase as a result, or if the woke scolds try to boycott Uber or Lyft if they allow drivers to be armed. The mandate that drivers be unarmed isn’t just putting drivers at risk. It’s costing them their lives.
We don’t know if either of these drivers were gun owners or concealed carry holders, but at this point, I wouldn’t drive for any rideshare or delivery company that required me to be unarmed while on the job. I would encourage every driver to get a gun, get training, get their concealed carry license (if they live in a state that requires one), and yes… I would also encourage them to violate company policy every time they get behind the wheel.
Uber won’t protect you. Lyft won’t protect you. It’s up to you to protect yourself. You can look for another job if you’re fired for carrying on the job, but your family can’t look for another you if you’re murdered by teenagers looking for a couple of bucks or a car to steal. Sadly, until these companies change their policies that are putting drivers at risk, violating the rules while obeying the law and carrying a gun for self-defense is the best option that drivers have.
H/T Town Hall.
The answer is No the Biden Regime can not stop the Chi-Coms as they own him body and soul.
The acrid atmosphere last week at the Captain Cook Hotel in Anchorage, Alaska, with its vivid murals of the 18th-century British seafarer James Cook’s discoveries throughout the Pacific, sounds very much like the acrid atmosphere almost exactly 60 years ago in the Beaux-Arts American and Soviet embassies in Vienna: grim, at least for the United States.
Vienna was where the 42-year-old President John Kennedy met the 67-year-old Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev, who, as Kennedy, told The New York Times’ James Reston immediately afterward, “beat the hell” out of him.
We don’t know whether Secretary of State Antony Blinken and national security adviser Jake Sullivan felt the same way about their treatment by their Chinese counterparts, Foreign Secretary Wang Yi and foreign affairs chief Yang Jiechi. But they had reason to.
Blinken, limiting himself to an agreed-on two minutes, started off by extolling “the rules-based international order” touted by the administrations of Presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama, and lamented recent Chinese actions in Xinjiang, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
Yang took 15 minutes to demand that the U.S. “fully abandon the hegemonic practice of willfully interfering in China’s internal affairs” and said China believed in “the United Nations-centered international system,” not “the rules-based international order … advocated by a small number of countries.”
Moreover, Yang said: “the challenges facing the United States in human rights are deep-seated. They did not just emerge over the past four years, such as Black Lives Matter.” China’s communists turned the Biden Democrats’ cheap-shot attacks on former President Trump’s and Republicans’ “systemic racism” and “white supremacy” against America itself.
“Many people within the United States,” Yang went on, apparently aware that Joe Biden hasn’t enjoyed the usual new president’s honeymoon in the polls, “actually have little confidence in the democracy of the United States.”
There was no question about Yang’s contempt. “The United States does not have the qualification to say that it wants to speak to China from a position of strength,” he said.
That is dangerous stuff. In Vienna, Kennedy was appalled by Khrushchev’s threats to block the United States from West Berlin and his insouciance about nuclear war. In Anchorage, Blinken and Sullivan showed awareness of China’s ruthlessness in Xinjiang, its breaking treaty obligations and its stamping out political opposition in Hong Kong. But both are done deals.
Looking ahead, their foremost concern is whether China is bent on absorbing Taiwan, “an inalienable part of China’s territory,” Yang insisted. The U.S. has agreed to recognize that view ever since Henry Kissinger laid the groundwork for Richard Nixon’s landmark 1972 visit to China.
But under the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act of 1979, we’ve provided military aid and cheered on Taiwan’s transition to political democracy and its enormous economic growth symbolized by its near monopoly in high-tech semiconductor manufacturing.
Now Taiwan’s separate existence seems threatened by China’s increasing military strength and open rejection of rules-based order. British historian Niall Ferguson sees a Chinese military attack on Taiwan as possible, quite possibly successful and, if so, hugely consequential. “Losing — or not even fighting for — Taiwan would be seen all over Asia as the end of American predominance in the region we now call the ‘Indo-Pacific,'” he says.
The Biden administration, like the Trump administration, seems to be trying to prevent this. Before the Anchorage meeting, Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin met with counterparts in Japan and South Korea, and afterward, Austin went on to India. The prospects for “Four Partner” — U.S., Japan, India, Australia — cooperation to cabin in China seem good. Britain, perhaps chastened by the crumpling of its Hong Kong agreement with China, pledges in its Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy to be “the European partner with the broadest and most integrated presence in the Indo-Pacific.”
One question now is whether the Biden administration will follow up on the Pacific Deterrence Initiative passed by Congress and signed by Trump last December. As Elbridge Colby and Walter Slocombe, Pentagon appointees in the Trump and Clinton administrations, respectively, write, “The United States needs to establish an effective forward defense that can, alongside the efforts of its allies and partners, blunt any Chinese attack on an ally or Taiwan” — a $20 billion-plus enterprise.
That’s not a small change, especially in a country with two distrusting political parties, both with strong pulls toward isolationism. But the alternatives are grimmer. All-out war over Taiwan would have horrifying human and economic costs. Looking on while China conquers 24 million people would be, as Ferguson writes, “the American Suez,” an abdication of hard and soft power in the 2,500-mile radius Valeriepieris circle centered on the South China Sea, where half the world’s people live.
American public opinion over the last five years has turned bipartisanly critical of China. But can a hyperpartisan administration firm up the bipartisan support needed for a credible policy of deterrence against Chinese aggression against Taiwan?
The nightmare of Joe Pee Pads Biden and his gun control has begun.
President Joe Biden said he plans to take aggressive action to implement new gun-control measures through both executive orders and by proposing legislation on Thursday.
When asked whether he plans to unilaterally enact new restrictions on homemade firearms, provide funding for state and local gun-control efforts, or propose legislation making gun manufacturers liable for criminal misuse of their products, Biden said he does.
“All the above,” he said. “It’s a matter of timing.”
Biden did not elaborate on what the specific policies might look like or when they would be announced, but he has promised aggressive action on new gun control since the beginning of his presidential campaign. He faces an uphill battle in passing new gun restrictions through an evenly divided Senate. He indicated support for breaking down the 60-vote threshold for ending the filibuster—a legislative tactic embraced by gun-control advocates. He said he wants filibuster reform to require senators to physically talk to block bills.
“If there’s complete lockdown and chaos as a result of the filibuster, then we’ll have to go beyond what I’m talking about,” Biden said.
This is the second time in a week Biden has promised to institute new gun-control policies either by legislation or executive action. In response to the mass shooting in Colorado on Monday, Biden gave a short speech calling on the Senate to take up the two House gun-control bills as well as pass a ban on popular firearms such as the AR-15.
“The United States Senate should immediately pass the two House-passed bills that close loopholes in the background check system,” Biden said. “We need to act. We should also ban assault weapons in the process.”
Biden’s gun proposals face roadblocks in the legislature. The House has not scheduled a vote on an “assault weapons” ban and did not pass one in the previous Congress. The two House bills focused on expanding background checks do not have enough support in the Senate to reach 50 votes, let alone 60. Opposition to nuking the filibuster also remains stable with Republicans uniformly opposed and Democratic senators Joe Manchin (W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (Ariz.) still against the idea.