Editor’s note: It’s helpful to know what’s on the minds of The Daily Signal’s audience. Here’s a sampling of recent emails to [email protected]—Ken McIntyre
Dear Daily Signal: Thanks for Peter Parisi’s commentary, “The ‘Dreamers’ Have No Right to Demand Anything.” Interesting to see this today, as just yesterday I emailed the following to President Trump:
Mr. President: Please do not give amnesty to the illegal immigrants. My parents came from Mexico many decades ago. They learned English (and did not have a class for English as a second language), became citizens, and grew to love America.
They never went on welfare nor took advantage of our country. They worked hard and paid their own way even for medical. They were never dependent on the government for anything. They became part of the community.
Today’s illegal aliens are making demands on us and they have no right, just as we have no right to make demands when we go to other countries. Today’s illegal aliens wave the Mexican flag and do not respect our laws, nor do they love our country as immigrants from past decades did.
Remember, that for 40-plus years our country even shut down immigration so that people could assimilate and learn English. Why can that not be done again?
Please, Mr. President, do not give in to any form of amnesty, and please stay firm on getting a complete wall built.
These thoughts are shared by many, many of my conservative friends across the country. (I have an email list of over 500 names, plus a whole group of conservative friends on Facebook, so I know this is how they feel.)—Molly Schubert, Raleigh, N.C.
The problem of sanctuary cities and states is not complicated (“Acting ICE Director: Let’s Charge Sanctuary Cities for Violating Federal Law”). Neither is the solution. All we need to solve the problem is accountability by the politicians responsible for passing sanctuary laws.
If Congress were to pass a law making political entities and individual legislators and administrators personally and financially liable for damages stemming from actions of illegal aliens in sanctuary areas, lawyers would carry the ball from there. They would engage in massive financial damage suits and put an end to all sanctuary entities in a matter of months at no cost to the general public, except to the taxpayers in the political entities promulgating “sanctuary.”
States could also enact statewide laws creating financial liability for all legislators and administrators within their authority. Who would vote to pass or keep sanctuary laws knowing that the Steinle family or other victims could bring suit against them for financial damages and win and collect?—Harold Knowles, North Royalton, Ohio
I was speaking with a former student who began dating a young man from Brazil. After a while, they decided that she would get a visa and travel to Brazil and stay with his family for six months. She shared with me that the Brazilian government knew where she was at all times. She had to make periodic visits to government offices to verify her whereabouts and the continued purpose for her visit.
So Brazil can keep tabs on people traveling there on visas, but liberals in our country think that is against people’s rights, and that our government has no right to do so as a sovereign nation. It’s as if they do not understand what the purpose of government is.
I think it would be interesting to have a story that shows how other governments around the world track people visiting on temporary visas, and how they handle immigration rather than focusing solely on what we do here. People who have never traveled have narrow perspectives that reflect only their experiences and exposures.
I also think it would be interesting to speak with legal immigrants and publish their stories to include why they immigrated to this country, when they immigrated, how they immigrated, how their lives changed afterward, and what their perspective is on illegal immigration.
I’d like to see a poll of legal immigrants and how they feel about illegal immigration. That information should in turn be shared with the government, so they understand that people who immigrate legally do not take kindly to others cutting in line rather than going through legal channels. The legal immigrants I know do not support illegal immigration.—Robin Greer
Consider this: The very first thing that must be accomplished to keep this country free is to standardize all voting laws, requirements to be a candidate in any governmental election (city, county, state, and federal), and term limits.
Illegal immigrants and noncitizens should never be permitted to be a candidate for any government position. Our laws need to require having a photo ID and proof of U.S. citizenship for any legal citizen to vote or hold office in any election.
Everyone must be required to have these documents to get Social Security, welfare, and other benefits, and to have their water, lights, and gas turned on at their residence. The only individuals who cannot provide these documents are those who are dead, decide to vote more than once, are convicted felons: fraudulent voters.
Without just and fair voting, there will never be a government without the corruption of foreign control.—P. Panehal
The other day in Brentwood, Long Island, police arrested five teens, two of whom were covered by the Delayed Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA. They were part of the MS-13 gang, trying to abduct a 16-year-old boy just outside Brentwood High School.
Several months earlier, four boys were brutally murdered in Central Islip, again by MS-13 using teens to lure the boys into the woods where they were beaten and hacked to death.
Do we need DACA? No. Do we need illegal aliens? No.
My grandparents and others came here legally and received no food stamps, no welfare. It was all right for them, but not for these people.—Jack Norris, Bayshore, N.Y.
Let President Trump know that Americans do not want anything short of deporting every DACA recipient and other illegal immigrant. They broke our sovereign law. No amnesty, no cutting deals, no ands, ifs, or buts. And make Mexico pay for building the wall.
Think of how much taxpayers’ money will not be used to support illegal immigrants. The amount saved can be the advance payment used to build the wall, instead of having to ask the House and Senate to authorize the money.—J. Kin Ng
No DACA, period. My vote is no DACA at any cost. Where is this going to stop?
When President Reagan gave the first (and only) amnesty, this was to be fixed.—Kevin Sanders Sr.
— Heritage on the Hill (@HeritageOTH) January 5, 2018
Really Reforming Health Care
Dear Daily Signal: I read the commentary on proposals to fix government (taxpayers)-funded health care by moving to state block grants, and I’ve got some questions (“Americans Need Health Reform to Be a Priority Issue in 2018“). Why must these taxes go through the federal system where Congress and the executive branch reduce the potential impact to those citizens targeted?
What are the administrative costs of federal and state bureaucracies for Obamacare, Medicare, Medicaid, etc.? What are the administrative costs for businesses and health care providers? How many programs are there, and who are the targets? What are the sources of funding for these programs? How effective are they, and by what measures?
I recently went on Medicaid and was surprised how small a percentage of care providers’ bills were paid. It looks to me that if these costs aren’t inflated, that a provider would be forced to take measures that will not benefit patient care. What are those changes in care we have seen or likely will see?
It doesn’t seem to make economic sense the way things work. Higher demand, price controls, additional patients, increasing costs, and fewer contributors would seem a prescription for disaster.
Are there efforts to look at the way we deliver health care instead of how we pay for it? Will the moves by Aetna and others to provide health care via storefronts lower costs or raise demand? Do restrictions on who can legally provide health care limit supply?—Bob Taylor
Saying No to Assisted Suicide
Dear Daily Signal: Thanks for your article and video on J.J. Hanson and his rejection of physician-assisted suicide (“This Marine Veteran Just Died of Cancer at 36. Here’s Why He Fought Assisted Suicide“). He was right to do what he did.
Doctors who provide physician-assisted suicide, I believe, are compromising the Hippocratic oath they took when they became a doctor in the first place. How can patients trust their doctors if they cannot, first and foremost, trust their doctors to save their lives?
Does physician-assisted suicide destroy the physician-patient relationship? I believe it does.
The group that made the video of Mr. Hanson should reach out to medical allies in the pro-life community such as the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the Catholic Medical Association, and the American College of Pediatricians.
Doctors can do their best to give patients their best advice. But they can’t accurately predict the future. Further, patients who have a strong faith can live productive lives and can be healed. There are no guarantees.
But, why give up? As Mr. Hanson pointed out, these families would suffer greatly with the loss of their loved one.
Thanks for your great reporting. Blessings for a great 2018.—Kathleen Goryl
A Danger After Tax Reform
Dear Daily Signal: I am writing to warn of a danger that I don’t think President Trump has noticed regarding the new tax law (“Taxpayers Could See Benefits of GOP Tax Bill as Early as February“). I heard one speaker say after passage of tax reform that taxpayers would see the difference in their filing in 2019. But even the president is talking as if it will happen in our April 2018 tax filing.
Why is this bad? Republicans have put out so much hype about taxpayers saving money, and I can assure you that most Americans will have not heard, not paid attention, not understood that all this tax-savings hype will not make any difference to them until 2019.
When April rolls around and we process our taxes, what the taxpayer will realize is that nothing has changed. Taxpayers will be teed off. You had better believe that the Democrats will take full advantage and proclaim that the president lied. Well, there go the 2018 midterm elections to the Democrats.
What the president needs to do is to explain it better and to keep the left from taking total control. He needs to act immediately. And to jump-start the new law, he needs to provide a tax rebate or other stimulus that will be received by Americans in 2018, to hold taxpayers over until the 2019 filing. Otherwise voters will run away.—Don P., Richmond, Va.
At least 33 businesses have announced raises, bonuses, and other improvements for employees.
Nine of the 33 businesses announced they are boosting their minimum wage for thousands of workers to $15 or more an hour. https://t.co/Uvjmep9mOP
— The Daily Signal (@DailySignal) January 4, 2018
I’ve been getting into it with some of my liberal friends about AT&T and Comcast (“Companies Announce Bonuses, Raises Following Passage of Tax Reform“). They’re basically saying the new tax law has nothing to do with the companies’ recent announcements of wage increases and business investments. Plus they point out the recent AT&T layoffs as evidence tax reform didn’t save jobs.
I know the layoffs were announced last year, so it had nothing to do with the tax reform bill. But if you could point me anywhere that would debunk their claims, that would be great.—Andy Schatner
Americans are worried about our growing budget deficit (“Congress Could Soon Face a Budget Fight. Here’s How Lawmakers Can Rein in Spending“). The national debt will continue to rise as long as Congress doesn’t control spending. It can take two actions—stop unauthorized appropriations and stop pork from being added to bills.
Our congressmen waive or disregard their own rules against unauthorized appropriations. The rules of “paygo” don’t preclude them from enacting legislation to increase direct spending. In other words, our congressmen spend taxpayers’ money at will.
Almost every bill that Congress passes has pork added at the last minute. Congress must prohibit any addition to any bill that is unrelated to the topic or adds pork or other spending. This would cut a lot of wasteful spending.
America is becoming enslaved by debt.—Persistent Professor
Pulitzer in hand, he proceeded to perpetrate perhaps the worst incident of fake news in American media history at a time when Americans relied on @nytimes and a handful of other large media outlets to bring them news from around the world.
— The Daily Signal (@DailySignal) January 2, 2018
Fake News and Classified Information
Dear Daily Signal: A review of the code of ethics for the Society of Professional Journalists indicates to me that fake news —including contrived reports or sloppy checking—is unethical (“The History of Fake News in the U.S.“). I am not interested in hampering a free press or freedom of speech. However, I would like to put a stop to unnamed sources. I believe that is unethical.
Also, when published information is proved to be wrong, I would like to see the correction given the same prominence, frequency, and distribution as the original error. I would be happy to have a law to that effect.
Likewise, release of classified information ought to require some restraint. The government ought to appear before an appropriate judicial panel before release of such information. The Constitution included the idea of providing for the common defense, and classified information that puts us at risk ought to have appropriate review (whatever that is) before it gets released by anyone.
Those who steal information for the purpose of exposing something should have to show cause why it should be released. Failing that, we ought to have loss of employment and pension, fines, and prison as deterrents. It is a criminal offense and without special circumstances, there should be some justice meted out after due process that currently does not exist.
Both the former FBI director, James Comey, and his law professor friend ought to come to grief from application of current law. We should not play favorites with the law. Let us not be stupid about providing for the common defense.—Frank Steinle
Dear Daily Signal: It is refreshing to see the leftist agenda of the New York Times pointed out, as in Jarrett Stepman’s commentary (“The New York Times Left Socialism Out of Its Report on Venezuela’s Devastation“). There are many other newspapers like the Times, and I wonder how can that happen in the “free” USA built on free enterprise and capitalism. (See PragerU.)
Most mainstream newspapers and universities have become leftist. I think it is simply because of the enormous amount of money pouring in. And people, being weak and greedy, accept the payment, live well, and do not care about the future the leftist agenda has in store. It really is a shame.
One just has to follow the United Nations’ Agenda 21 disguised as “sustainable development,” “clean environment,” etc. The whole global-warming scare and climate change are just tools to the leftist goals: one world government and suppression of the people.
Once we all drive electric cars, all they have to do is cut electricity and we all become immobile. It is total control of the public and elimination of the middle class. The public has to wake up and see what is behind this movement. President Obama was a champion of it and he did a lot of damage in his eight years, including raising the debt level from $10 trillion to roughly $20 trillion.
Cutting coal and giving away control of the internet was designed to cut freedom, and the people do not know it. Germany’s Angela Merkel complied with an Agenda 21 point to allow free movement of African and Middle Eastern young men to Europe. France’s Emmanuel Macron is also part of the game.
No wonder in Germany and Austria right-wing politicians gain votes. The European Union and the U.N. need to be dismantled. I am glad Brexit exists, and pray it will go through.—Rolf Pfeiffer
— Vicki McKenna (@VickiMcKenna) December 14, 2017
This and That
Dear Daily Signal: I’m a retired, 91-year-old man who worked for the telephone company from 1952 till 1989, and I’m responding to Elizabeth Slattery’s commentary, “This Test Claims to Show Whether You’re Unconsciously Racist.”
I spent about 17 years in the South Bronx as a walking repairman and installer of new telephones. The work was in the tenements and projects. The large majority of jobs was for blacks, Hispanics, and new immigrants from below our borders and Europe.
My opinion of most people must be considered by individual experiences encountered in daily jobs. How can a test designed by people, perhaps never exposed to the real world, be relevant? The answers of those taking the test would necessarily be influenced by encounters in the real world. I intend to take the test for my own interest.—George Fischer
Net neutrality assumes everyone using the internet generally are good people, like all internet service providers and businesses are, and that they never would think of doing anything wrong to people for profits or agendas to control information.
Like Twitter counted the freedom of expression of the pro-life congresswoman as worth nothing, and protected the world from ideas different from their outlook of cultural colonization for the good of everyone else?—Mike Kelley
Motivational reform is a great way to reverse decades of throwing taxpayer money at social issues, expanded by government, that would not be tolerated in the private sector (“Trump Administration’s 2 Priorities for Welfare Reform Executive Order“). The old adage “a hand up, not a handout” is still a great rule.
There should be work-related guidelines for any taxpayer assistance, and they should be very strict. The most important lesson is discipline, and that means we don’t need federal bureaucrats defining rules of engagement.—Brannen Edwards
I know that many of your readers enjoy the video reports you produce, and on occasion I find them informative. However, I find it more stimulating and thought provoking if the videos would include a transcript. Including the transcript allows me to think about what is being said and review the actual words more thoughtfully.
The audio text takes too much effort to review. I also believe our society is getting lazy by watching the news rather than reading the text and getting more engaged with the content rather than watching the images. The images have a way of skewing your thoughts away from perhaps what is truly being said.
Keep up the good work and continue pursuing journalistic excellence.—Joe Christ
Editor’s note: Hopefully you’ve noticed that we’ve begun including transcripts for many of our videos, Joe.
Regarding Jarrett Stepman’s recent commentaries: I think that perhaps Charlottesville, Virginia, can be compared to Ferguson, Missouri, and the University of Missouri. Outside troublemakers intended to bring chaos into the community and bring down whatever they could.
The cost to the city of Ferguson? Monies taken away from the University of Missouri by benefactors, and enrollment has fallen to where they have closed dorms and new facility. Divide and conquer. America is in sad shape and could already be lost. Those who can bring the cause to the forefront are silent.
History is not being taught in schools, but I am a firm believer that America needs to know exactly how Ellis Island worked. I think it would benefit many.—Connie Harris
Walter Williams’ commentary about teachers’ academic qualifications (“The Low Academic Quality of Too Many Teachers“) omits two critical issues: teachers’ pay and the willingness to tax sufficiently to pay enough to make teaching at least competitive with comparable professions.—Jacob T. Chachkes
Appreciation and Feedback
Dear Daily Signal: The Daily Signal is basically the only political or worldview source I monitor daily. I always read through the article titles and occasionally read articles. I value this source immensely. This is saying a lot, since when Barack Obama was elected to a second term it marked a healthy change in my perspective from being a bit of a news junkie.
While I’ve been a committed Christian for many years, I finally very much took to heart the words of Psalm 2, which concludes with the words: Blessed are all who take refuge in him. (I actually teach grades 1-4 at a small Lutheran school in Yakima, Washington, with a 60-year history.)
I’ve just finished reading the excellent commentary on Kay Coles James by Paris Dennard (“What I Learned From The Heritage Foundation’s New Leader”). But what got me to finally send a note is my curiosity about the three ads with links under the heading “Trending,” followed by three links to Daily Signal articles.
I haven’t followed these first three links because they seem like they are sensationalism designed to be provocative. But I’m curious as to whether these are something The Heritage Foundation is endorsing, or if they are just paying the bills.
The important takeaway from this note is my appreciation for the work Heritage is doing. On the side is a bit of feedback.—Marilee Nolte
How Are We Doing?
We recently started to read The Daily Signal and love it. Thank you so much for giving us information on what is happening in our world without a progressive (i.e. left wing, liberal) bias. It is so very refreshing. We look forward to each day’s installment. May God richly bless you.—Steve and Sandy McCuen
Great job by your White House correspondent, Fred Lucas. Finally, people are standing up to the liberal bully press. Glad you are doing just that!—Bob Arthurs
You’re doing great. We need a bulldog over there at The Daily Signal. God bless your efforts.—Phil Reich
Thank you all. I look forward to seeing The Daily Signal’s Morning Bell every morning. Very good information from someone who can be trusted. Thanks again. Great job done.—Keith Spiers
I truly enjoy your daily briefings. Thank you.—Winnie Payne
Let me say it again. Why do conservatives keep pointing out how the left is hurting themselves—pointing out their faults and telling them how to improve? Say nothing! In the words of the great philosopher W.C. Fields, “Never smarten up a chump.”—Robert Albanese
Every article in Morning Bell Jan. 4 attracted my attention. I receive many, many email posts, and none has the influence on me that yours does.—Joanie Brown, San Luis Obispo, Calif.
I am a new subscriber, and I have to say I love the article and the contributors. Keep up the good work.—Barb Orcutt