Wednesday, August 28, 2019


China and the 2020 Election

On April 25, 2019, Joe Biden declared his candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination. Seven days later, on May 3, 2019, the Chinese sent a diplomatic cable to the Trump Administration blowing up a 150-page draft agreement that had taken many months to negotiate.  The cable was riddled with reversals by China that undermined core U.S. demands.  In each of the seven chapters of the trade deal, China had deleted its commitments to change laws to resolve core complaints that caused the United States to launch a trade war: theft of intellectual property and trade secrets; forced technology transfers; competition policy; access to financial services; and currency manipulation.
A coincidence or a premeditated scenario?
Joe Biden, in his days in the Senate, was very partial to China, as he voted against revoking China’s most-favored nation status and in 2007 opposed the idea of applying any tariffs on China despite their obvious unfair trade practices.  However, it was as Vice President that he became wholly enamored with the country and its leadership.
For example, while in China, Biden, in August of 2011, defended and approvedof China’s one-child policy which brutally used forced abortions to implement the law.  In the same year Biden was given the assignment, by Barack Obama, to be the point man on China due his close personal relationship with Xi Jinping, then Vice-President and heir apparent to the Presidency.  (Xi Jinping is currently President and General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party, the most powerful figure in China’s political system).
Due solely to Joe Biden’s influence, in 2011, less than a year after starting Rosemont Seneca Partners, essentially a three-man investment firm with Chris Heinz (stepson of John Kerry), Biden’s son Hunter, who had no previous experience in private equity, was in China to explore business opportunities with Chinese state-owned enterprises.  These meetings occurred just hours before Joe Biden met with the Chinese president in Washington.  Later in the same year, Hunter had a second meeting with many of the same Chinese financial powerhouses -- just two weeks after his father, the Vice President, conducted U.S.-China strategic talks in Washington with Chinese officials.
Joe Biden and Xi Jinping dine at the State Department, Valentine's Day, 2012
(Official White House Photo by David Lienemann, croppped)
Meanwhile Joe Biden never missed an opportunity to downplay China’s threat to the United States.  In May of 2013, during a commencement speech he assured those concerned the Chinese were “going to eat our lunch” that they had nothing to be alarmed about as China had immense problems and an inability to think differently.  In May of 2014 Biden described China as a nation incapable of producing innovative products and ideas.  (Two weeks after declaring his 2020 candidacy Biden, in Iowa, said, “China is going to eat our lunch? Come on, man…they can’t even figure out how to deal with the corruption that exists within the system.  I mean, you know, they’re not bad folks, folks.  But guess what, they’re not competition for us.”   After a massive backlash, he walked back some of those comments a few days later by saying “I don’t suggest China is not a problem.”
In December 2013, Biden flew to Beijing on Air Force Two with his son Hunter on an official trip ostensibly to discuss tensions over disputed territories in the East China Sea.  Joe and Hunter were ushered into a red-carpet meeting with a delegation of various Chinese officials.  Hunter remained with the delegation while his father met with President Xi Jinping.  During these meetings Joe Biden struck an extremely conciliatory and friendly tone with the Chinese leadership -- much to the dismay of America’s allies in the region.
Ten day later, Hunter’s company, Rosemont Seneca, signed an exclusive $1 Billion (later expanded to $1.5 Billion) deal with the state-owned Bank of China, creating an investment fund called Bohai Harvest, with money guaranteed by the Chinese Government.  As Peter Schweizer, who was the first to unveil these conflicts of interest, wrote in his book Secret Empires “the Chinese Government was literally funding a business that it co-owned along with the sons of two of America’s most powerful decision makers”  Rarely has there been a more stark illustration of being “compromised by a foreign power.”
And in 2014, another arm of Hunter’s budding business empire, Rosemont Realty, began negotiating multi-billion dollar deals with Gemini Investments, a Chinese firm with ties to the China Ocean Shipping Company Ltd. which reportedly operates as an extension of the Chinese military and who eventually acquired 75% of Rosemont Realty in order to purchase commercial real estate in the United States.
Anyone who has dealt with the Chinese Government or the myriad of entities controlled by the government can attest: any foreign business transaction with China always has a requisite or implied quid pro quo that oftentimes does not involve monetary considerations.  Once entangled in this web it is nearly impossible to escape.  It would be naïve to believe that the Biden family, particularly Joe, are not embroiled in this labyrinth of expectations and demands.
In the years and months before he decided to throw his hat in the ring, it had to be obvious to Joe Biden and in particular those close to him that his mental acuity is rapidly failing, not to mention that his and Hunter’s questionable business activities in China and the Ukraine would be exposed on a grand scale.  Why then would he willingly take on a grueling 18-month marathon of running for president?  As the timing of Biden’s announcement and Chinese abrupt volte face on the trade agreement implies, one must, therefore, assume he was coerced into declaring his candidacy as a pawn in the chess game the Chinese are playing in order to defeat Donald Trump in 2020.
If Xi Jinping coerced his old friend Joe Biden into running, then he placed his prestige and fate on the line that China would be able to hold out in the ongoing trade war and achieve a favorable outcome in any negotiations with Biden at the helm.  While Xi Jinping is powerful, he still is one of seven members of a standing committee of the Politburo (25 members) that can oust him.   At this point Xi Jinping cannot be perceived as losing face by caving to Donald Trump and reinstituting the agreement made in the spring of 2019. 
Therefore, while the threat of further escalation in the trade war will recede there is little chance of anything substantive happening as intransigence will be the rule the day between now and November 2020.  However, China’s growing internal problems and failing economy will dramatically escalate, which could force the Politburo to either remove Xi Jinping, or accept, with clinched teeth and a renewed determination to defeat Donald Trump, the basic terms of the May 2019 trade agreement.
Joe Biden’s everyday performance on the campaign trail reinforces the reality that he will not be the Democratic Party presidential nominee.  Thus, whoever is nominated by the Democratic Party will, by default, be backed by the Chinese -- who will do whatever is legal, illegal or unethical to defeat Donald Trump.  The actions the Russians were falsely accused of in the 2016 election will be child’s play by comparison.
It appears that the Chinese may have made a major blunder in April and May of 2019.  A blunder with potential major ramifications for China and, if Donald Trump is defeated in 2020, the United States.

Senate Finance Committee Probes Biden-Linked, Chinese Military-Boosting Tech Sale

Tom Brenner/Getty Images
 15 Aug 20192,058

The Senate Finance Committee is probing the Obama administration’s 2015 decision to approve the sale of a U.S. company with insight into “military applications” to the Chinese government and an investment firm run by former Vice President Joe Biden’s youngest son, Hunter Biden.

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), the committee’s chairman, sent a letter to the Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin on Thursday requesting documents relating to the sale of Henniges, a Michigan-based automotive company, to Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) and Bohai Harvest RST (BHR). The latter was formed in 2013 by a merger between a subsidiary of the Bank of China and Rosemont Seneca, a firm started by Hunter Biden and Chris Heinz, the stepson of former Secretary of State John Kerry.
Since AVIC was a subsidiary of the Chinese government and Henniges, the producer of “dual-use” anti-vibration technology with military application, the deal required approval from the Obama administration’s Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS). The panel — made up of representatives from 16 different federal bodies, including the departments of State, Treasury, and Defense — is required to review any transaction that could lead to a foreign person gaining control of an American business.
In question is whether CIFUS was influenced by Obama administration officials, most notedly Joe Biden and John Kerry, who had an interest in seeing the deal move forward.
“The direct involvement of Mr. Hunter Biden and Mr. Heinz in the acquisition of Henniges by the Chinese government creates a potential conflict of interest,” Grassley wrote.
The senator noted in his letter that AVIC’s bid for Henniges should have immediately set off alarm bells in the Obama White House. In 2007, AVIC “reportedly involved in stealing sensitive data regarding the Joint Strike Fighter program,” which it later “reportedly incorporated … into China’s J-20 and J‑31 aircraft.”
Even more troubling, however, is that bid was facilitated at the same time China was staking out a more adversarial role in global affairs. At the time, Beijing was suspected of undermining U.S. cybersecurity by underwriting hackers stealing governmental data. There was also simmering tension over disputes in the South China Sea.
Despite the threat to national security, the $600 million deal was approved by CIFUS, with AVIC purchasing 51 percent of the company and BHR taking ownership of the other 49 percent. Upon purchase, an industry newsletter stated the deal was the “biggest Chinese investment into US automotive manufacturing assets to date.”
In his letter to Mnuchin, Grassley compared the deal to the Uranium One scandal, which arose when former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton approved the sale of a Canadian mining company to Rosatom, the state-owned Russian nuclear energy conglomerate. It later emerged that both investors in the company and Russian energy officials had donated heavily to the Clinton Foundation.
“As with the Uranium One transaction, there is cause for concern that potential conflicts of interest could have influenced CFIUS’ approval of the Henniges transaction,” Grassley wrote. “Accordingly, Congress and the public must fully understand the decision-making process that led to the Henniges approval and the extent to which CFIUS fully considered the transaction’s national security risks.”
This is not the first time that Hunter Biden’s ties to China have caused grief for his father’s political career. As Peter Schweizer, a senior contributor at Breitbart News, revealed in his bestselling book Secret Empires: How the American Political Class Hides Corruption and Enriches Family and Friends, Hunter Biden signed the $1.5 billion deal creating BHR in 2013 only ten days after visiting China aboard Air Force Two with his father.


Eight Things to Know About the Biden Family’s Culture of Corruption

14 Aug 2019386

The family of former Vice President Joe Biden has earned millions of dollars since the start of his political career, often from dealings with heavy political overtones.

Biden, the frontrunner among 2020 Democrats, often touts his middle-class bonafides on the campaign trail. Although Biden did not become a multi-millionaire until he left the White House in 2017, the same cannot be said of his family. In fact, several members of the Biden clan became immensely wealthy over the span of the former vice president’s 40-year political career.
Breitbart News is providing an in-depth breakdown of a few instances in which Joe Biden’s political career and his family’s financial interests seemed to intersect.
1. Joe Biden’s younger brother, James Biden, secured generous bank loans.
In the wake of Joe Biden’s upset election to the U.S. Senate in 1972, his younger brother James was able to secure a series of generous bank loans to start a Delaware night club.
Although James Biden had no business experience and a net worth of less than $10,000 at the time, he was able to arrange more than $160,000 in start-up capital for the venture. When the nightclub proved to be unsuccessful, generating more than $500,000 of debt by 1975, James Biden and his business partners were thrown a life-line by a Pennsylvania bank that loaned him a further $300,000.
During the same time period James Biden was receiving the extensive lines of credit, Joe Biden was sitting on the Senate Banking Committee, which had purview over the financial sector. A specific jurisdiction of the committee was the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), which provides bailouts to banks if they should become over-leveraged.
2. Joe Biden’s top campaign contributor hired his youngest son Hunter right out of law school.
Shortly after Joe Biden was reelected to the U.S. Senate in 1996, his largest campaign contributor, the credit card issuer MBNA Corp., hired his son for an undisclosed role. The job raised eyebrows from good government groups because MBNA employees had just donated $63,000 to Joe Biden’s reelection campaign in what appeared to be a coordinatedmanner to sidestep federal campaign finance regulations.
Clouding the picture even further was that, at the time, Hunter Biden was a 26-year-old recent graduate of Yale Law School with no prior banking or business experience. Both father and son defended the job offer, claiming nothing improper had or would result because of the arrangement.
“Unfortunately, no matter where I went to work, some people would make an issue of it,” the younger Biden told the Delaware News Journal in November 1996 when the job was announced.
Despite his role being unknown at the time of his hiring, when Hunter Biden left the company in 1998 to join the Clinton-era Commerce Department it was as a senior vice president.
Throughout the 1990s and early 2000s, Joe Biden was championing bankruptcy reform legislation endorsed by financial interests and credit card companies like MBNA.
3. An MBNA executive purchased Biden’s house for the full asking price in a deal that appeared facilitated by the company. 
A senior MBNA executive purchased Biden’s 10,000 square foot colonial mansion in the Wilmington, Delaware, suburbs for the asking price of $1.2 million in February 1996. The sale garnered notice because larger and newer homes in the vicinity sold for less. The issue became a minor campaign problem for Biden’s reelection but was quickly dismissed when the senator provided local media appraisal forms showing his home was worth the value for what it was sold.
Byron York, however, investigated the matter in an exposé for the American Spectator and found that properties appraised around the same value in the vicinity had “sold for a good deal less” than at what they were valued on paper.
“In comparison, it appears [the MBNA executive] simply paid Biden’s full asking price,” York wrote. “And, according to people familiar with the situation, the house needed quite a bit of work; contractors and their trucks descended on the house for months after the purchase.”
As York also noted, it appeared that MBNA may have played a role in facilitating the purchase. Documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission show that “in 1996 MBNA reimbursed [the executive] $330,115 for expenses arising from the move.” Of that total, $210,000 “was to make up for a loss [the executive] suffered on the sale of his Maryland home.”
4. Hunter Biden remained on MBNA’s payroll while Joe Biden was writing bankruptcy reform legislation. 
Throughout the early 2000s, Hunter Biden remained on MBNA’s payroll as a consultant while his father was writing and pushing the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005. The arrangement, which did not become public until after the law was passed, started in 2001 after Hunter Biden had left his position in the Commerce Dept. MBNA was paid monthly consulting fees, with some claiming they ranged upwards of $100,000, to advise the company on online banking issues.
The 2005 bankruptcy tightened regulations to make it extremely more difficult to declare bankruptcy. It was heavily favored by MBNA and other giants in the banking and finance sectors. Many consumer protection advocates, including Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), have claimed the bill benefited special interests at the expense of consumers. Some have even suggested the law only served to hasten and aggravate the recession of the late 2000s.
As previously reported by the New York Times, Biden worked against many of his own fellow Democrats in Congress to ensure the final version of the bill was free of provisions opposed by companies like MBNA.
Biden “was one of five Democrats in March 2005 who voted against a proposal to require credit card companies to provide more effective warnings to consumers about the consequences of paying only the minimum amount due each month,” the Times noted.
5. Joe Biden paid his family members with campaign cash.
During his failed 2008 presidential campaign, Joe Biden paid more than $2 million to his family members and their business. According to the Washington Times, the money went to a company that was a long-time employer of Biden’s sister, Valerie Biden Owens. Biden also directed funds to a law firm started by his old campaign treasurer, which at the time also employed his youngest son Hunter.
6. James and Hunter Biden sought to monetize off Joe Biden’s political standing. 
In 2006, close to when Joe Biden assumed the chairmanship of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and launched his second presidential campaign, James and Hunter Biden purchased a hedge fund called Paradigm Global Advisors. Although neither man had a strong background in finance, James and Hunter Biden reportedly believed they could leverage Joe Biden’s political connections to their benefits.
“Don’t worry about investors,” James Biden purportedly told Paradigm’s senior leadership upon taking over the fund, as reported by Politico. “We’ve got people all around the world who want to invest in Joe Biden.”
Paradigm’s executives claim that James and Hunter Biden saw the hedge fund as a way to “take money from rich foreigners who could not legally give money” to Joe Biden’s campaign account.
“We’ve got investors lined up in a line of 747s filled with cash ready to invest in this company,” James Biden allegedly told Paradigm’s staff.
Hunter and James also tried to solicit labor unions to invest their pension funds in Paradigm by relying on Joe Biden’s long record of advocating in favor of collective bargaining.
The efforts proved to unsuccessful, though, with James and Hunter Biden choosing to strip and sell the company off by 2010 after a number of bad decisions, including partnering with a Ponzi scheme.
7. James Biden’s received a $1.5 billion contract to build houses in Iraq while Joe Biden was overseeing the region. 
After his foray into the world of high finance ended disastrously, James Biden joinedHillstone International LLC as a vice president in 2010. The company, a subsidiary of Hill International, at the time, was pursuing technology and construction projects around the globe.
Although the company had been losing money for some time, James Biden’s arrival resulted in something of a reversal in fortune. Within six months of James Biden joining the firm, Hillstone was the recipient of $1.5 billion dollar contract to build 100,000 houses in war-torn Iraq. The deal, which was never finalized because outside funding failed to materialize, quickly caught attention as Joe Biden was overseeing the Obama administration’s policy in the region.
Both the Obama White House and Hillstone denied Joe Biden had anything to do with the deal, pointing to the fact the contract was awarded through a South Korean group working to build homes in Iraq. Despite the denials, Irvin Richter, the founder of Hill International, did admit James Biden may have had something to do with the deal.
“Listen, his name helps him get in the door, but it doesn’t help him get business,” Richter told Fox Business in 2012 when discussing James Biden. “People who have important names tend to get in the door easier but it doesn’t mean success. If he had the name Obama he would get in the door easier.”
Complicating matters was the fact James Biden was likely to get rich if the deal went through. Fox Business reported that a group of minority partners, which included James Biden, owned 49 percent of Hillstone. The other 51 percent was owned by the company’s parent group, Hill International. Given Hillstone’s profit breakdown structure, James Biden and the other minority partners would have been eligible to split more than $735 million after the deal was completed
8. Hunter Biden’s firm scored a $1.5 billion deal with the Bank of China only days after Joe Biden and his youngest son visited the country. 
Peter Schweizer, a senior contributor at Breitbart News, revealed in his bestselling book Secret Empires: How the American Political Class Hides Corruption and Enriches Family and Friends that Hunter Biden’s firm signed a multi-billion dollar with a subsidiary of the state-owned Bank of China only ten days after he visited the country with his father aboard Air Force Two.
In a SiriusXM Breitbart News Tonight radio interview from last year, Schweizer explained how the Biden-China deal unfolded:
“In December of 2013, Vice President Joe Biden flies to Asia for a trip, and the centerpiece for that trip is a visit to Beijing, China,” said Schweizer. “To put this into context, in 2013, the Chinese have just exerted air rights over the South Pacific, the South China Sea. They basically have said, ‘If you want to fly in this area, you have to get Chinese approval. We are claiming sovereignty over this territory.’ Highly controversial in Japan, in the Philippines, and in other countries. Joe Biden is supposed to be going there to confront the Chinese. Well, he gets widely criticized on that trip for going soft on China. So basically, no challenging them, and Japan and other countries are quite upset about this.”

Report: Chinese Missiles Could Wipe Out U.S. and Allied Pacific Bases in ‘Opening Hours of Conflict’

Teeth of the Dragon: China Conducts Missile Defense Test Next to Korean Border
AP Photo/ Pang Xinglei/Xinhua

The United States Studies Center at the University of Sydney in Australia released a report on Monday that warned America has lost its military superiority in the Indo-Pacific region and Chinese missiles could wipe out its bases with “precision strikes in the opening hours of a conflict.”

“The combined effect of ongoing wars in the Middle East, budget austerity, underinvestment in advanced military capabilities and the scale of America’s liberal order-building agenda has left the US armed forces ill-prepared for great power competition in the Indo-Pacific,” the authors concluded.
The report warned that too many American politicians and foreign policy officials have an “outdated superpower mindset” because they believe China would never act aggressively because the long-term consequences would include a horrific world war. 
In truth, Chinese strategy has focused on limiting American power projection in the Pacific while building up the enormous missile inventory of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA). The imbalance of forces has reached the point where the PLA could pull off a quick disarming strike followed by a clear, difficult-to-reverse victory. 
In other words, a swarm of missiles would knock out key U.S. and allied assets in the Western Pacific within a matter of hours. The PLA would quickly move to secure its objectives, establish a foothold on the territory it desires, and then turn the logic of deterrence on its head by asking if the U.S. is prepared to suffer heavy loses in a protracted war to reverse those gains. According to the report:
Having studied the American way of war — premised on power projection and all-domain military dominance — China has deployed a formidable array of precision missiles and other counter-intervention systems to undercut America’s military primacy. By making it difficult for US forces to operate within range of these weapons, Beijing could quickly use limited force to achieve a fait accompli victory — particularly around Taiwan, the Japanese archipelago or maritime Southeast Asia — before America can respond, sowing doubt about Washington’s security guarantees in the process.
This has obliged the Pentagon to focus on rebuilding the conventional military capabilities required to deny Chinese aggression in the first place, placing a premium on sophisticated air and maritime assets, survivable logistics and communications, new stocks of munitions and other costly changes.
The Australian report describes the U.S. problem as “strategic insolvency,” meaning America now has more defense commitments than it can realistically meet with current defense spending. 
Rivals like China are surging ahead with force modernization and increasing their combat power, while the U.S. and its allies invested too heavily in Middle Eastern conflicts and nation-building over the past two decades, reduced defense spending to satisfy domestic political demands, provided far too many countries with security guarantees, and convinced themselves none of those markers would ever be called in. 
The shift in focus from Cold War great-power competition to counter-terrorist operations has left too many Western strategic planners – and, crucially, the politicians who finance their operations – unable to imagine how a battle between near-peer forces could unfold. 
Unfortunately, the world’s heavyweight bad actors have no such poverty of strategic imagination. The University of Sydney report noted that China’s military buildup has “successfully focused on negating the technological and operational advantages that the US military has grown accustomed to since the end of the Cold War,” saying:
Long-range ballistic and cruise missile complexes, in addition to other counter-intervention systems, now threaten American and allied bases and operating locations from Japan to Singapore. These weapons could see China sink or destroy expensive allied warships and aircraft for a fraction of the cost of US power projection. As the majority of America’s forward-deployed air power is concentrated on vulnerable bases within range of Chinese missiles, US aircraft are unlikely to achieve air superiority during a crisis. If unaddressed, this will undercut America’s efforts to blunt Chinese aggression and is likely to be compounded by the fact that US surge forces and logistical support assets are also under resourced and vulnerable to Chinese counter-intervention capabilities.
In short, U.S. forces in the Indo-Pacific region no longer have the mass to absorb a sucker punch like the missile swarm envisioned by the report. It has become disturbingly feasible for the Chinese to hit enough crucial targets to neutralize America’s presence in the Pacific for long enough to put Chinese troops on the ground in places such as Taiwan, at which point the game would change from fending off a Chinese attack to dislodging an occupying force without inflicting horrendous civilian casualties and destroying valuable infrastructure. 
Launching such an attack might seem even more attractive to China because it would devalue American security guarantees around the world, greatly amplifying China’s sales pitch that it can provide better security to its client states with fewer harangues about human rights.
The report recommended “hardening” vital facilities to make them harder to neutralize with a first strike, although China’s vast size and closer proximity to likely theaters of conflict give it an inherent advantage – it can launch large numbers of missiles and aircraft quickly from a wide assortment of bases, and they have shorter flight times to contested areas, allowing the PLA to more easily maintain the rapid tempo of operations seen in conflicts like the Gulf War. With these logistics in mind, the report recommended the U.S. develop missiles with longer ranges and heavier payloads, so that every punch it throws is a haymaker.
The University of Sydney report gave the Trump administration credit for setting the right priorities with respect to China, but found a dismaying lack of follow-through from Washington, in part because increased defense spending and more aggressive military recruiting are tough sells on Capitol Hill:
America’s capacity to enforce its vast liberal order has also correspondingly declined. Whereas the United States and its allies accounted for 80 per cent of world defence spending in 1995, today their share has fallen to just 52 per cent — leaving them less well-equipped to address an ever growing line-up of international challenges.
As Harvard University academic Stephen Walt observes of US strategy during this period: “The available resources had shrunk, the number of opponents had grown, and still America’s global agenda kept expanding.”
The consequences of this overstretch are now coming home to roost. Not only have the direct costs of liberal order-building been astronomical — by some estimates, the Department of Defense has spent over US$1.8 trillion on the global war on terror since 11 September 2001 for little strategic payoff — but the worldwide diffusion of American resources and attention has left the military under-prepared for the return of great power competition. This is what the Pentagon is now working to address. 
The report advised Australia, and other key regional allies such as Japan, to step up their efforts and help the United States address its “strategic insolvency” issue in the Pacific. This posture would transform Australia from a “security contributor to a front-line ally” and prepare for a “more unstable future in which the Australian Defense Force may be required to provide large-scale independent strategic effects to secure its vital national interests.”
This is interesting advice in light of President Donald Trump’s arguments with European leaders over their contributions to NATO funding. Some of the grumbles about Trump’s approach come from Europeans, and Americans, who essentially think of the whole thing as a fiscal game, an argument about how much money to stuff into a jar for a rainy day that will never come because a great-power invasion from Europe has become unthinkable. 
From the perspective of “strategic insolvency,” however, it is clear that every American partner must make the maximum contribution so that U.S. security guarantees don’t look like overdrawn checks written from an anemic military bank account. As long as the U.S. appears strategically insolvent, adversaries will consider calling Washington’s bluff and triggering a cascade failure of U.S. credibility.


Concern Over British Hong Kong Diplomat Missing, Believed Detained By Chinese Authorities

A British Union Jack flag is displayed as protesters gather along a fenced-off Victoria Harbour pier in Hong Kong, late on June 28, 2019, before midnight, when China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) will automatically be granted control of the pier under a 1994 British and Chinese agreement. - Hong Kong …
Getty Images

BEIJING (AP) – The British foreign ministry said it is “extremely concerned” about an employee of its consulate in Hong Kong who has been missing since crossing into mainland China on a business trip.

A statement from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office said it is seeking information from Hong Kong and Guangdong province about the fate of the employee, who was detained while crossing from the city of Shenzhen into Hong Kong.
Local media reports identified him as Simon Cheng Man-kit, a trade and investment officer at the Scottish Development International section of the consulate. The reports say he attended a business event in Shenzhen on Aug. 8 but never returned to neighboring Hong Kong despite plans to do so the same day.

“We are extremely concerned by reports that a member of our team has been detained returning to Hong Kong from Shenzhen. We are providing support to his family and seeking further information from authorities in Guangdong Province and Hong Kong,” said the statement, which was forwarded by the British Embassy in Beijing.
It is unclear whether the man possessed a diplomatic passport, but the seizure of consular staff of any status or rank is highly unusual. Despite Beijing’s declaration of a “golden era” in Sino-British ties, relations have grown tense in recent months amid pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, a British colony for 156 years before its handover to Chinese rule in 1997.
The Scottish government said it was in contact with the Foreign Office about the case.
“We are aware of this incident and we are concerned for Mr. Cheng’s welfare,” it said.
Asked about the case at a daily briefing on Tuesday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang responded, “I’m not aware of that.”
In response to questions about the case at a press briefing, Hong Kong police said officers were looking into it after receiving a missing persons report on Aug. 9 but cannot disclose more details because of personal data protection rules.
Chief Superintendent Tse Chun-chung said Hong Kong police haven’t been notified about the case by mainland Chinese authorities under a mutual notification arrangement set up for such cases.
Press officers for the Guangdong police and Ministry of Public Security could not be reached by phone. The ministry did not immediately respond to faxed questions about the case.

China, Not Russia, the Greater Threat

Ten weeks of protests, some huge, a few violent, culminated Monday with a shutdown of the Hong Kong airport.
Ominously, Beijing described the violent weekend demonstrations as "deranged" acts that are "the first signs of terrorism," and vowed a merciless crackdown on the perpetrators.
China is being pushed toward a decision it does not want to make: to use military force, as in Tiananmen Square 30 years ago, to crush the uprising. For that would reveal the character of President Xi Jinping's Communist dictatorship, as well as Beijing's long-term plans for this semi-autonomous city of almost 7.5 million.
Yet this is not the only internal or border concern of Xi's regime.
Millions of Muslim Uighurs in China's west are in concentration camps undergoing "re-education" to change their way of thinking on loyalty, secession and the creation of a new East Turkestan.
In June, a Chinese vessel rammed and sank a Philippine fishing boat, leaving its 22 crewmen to drown. The fishermen were rescued by a Vietnamese boat.
President Rodrigo Duterte's reluctance to resist China's fortification in the South China Sea of the rocks and reefs Manila claims are within its own territorial waters has turned Philippine nationalism anti-China.
China's claim to Taiwan is being defied by Taipei, which just bought $2.2 billion in U.S. military equipment including Abrams tanks and Stinger missiles.
Any Taiwanese declaration of independence, China has warned, means war.
While Taiwan's request to buy U.S. F-16s has not yet been approved, in a rare visit, Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen stopped over in the U.S. recently, before traveling on to Caribbean countries that retain diplomatic relations with Taipei. Beijing has expressed its outrage at the U.S. arms sales and Tsai's unofficial visit.
The vaunted Chinese economy is growing, at best, at half the double-digit rate of a decade ago, not enough to create the jobs needed for hundreds of millions in the countryside seeking work.
And talks have been suspended in the U.S.-China trade dispute, at the heart of which, says White House aide Peter Navarro, are Beijing's "seven deadly sins" in dealing with the United States:
China steals our intellectual property via cybertheft, forces U.S. companies in China to transfer technology, hacks our computers, dumps into our markets to put U.S. companies out of business, subsidizes state-owned enterprises to compete with U.S. firms, manipulates its currency, and, despite our protests, ships to the USA the fentanyl drug that has become a major killer of Americans.
Such practices have enabled China to run up annual trade surpluses of $300 billion to $400 billion at our expense, and, says Navarro, have caused the loss of 70,000 factories and 5 million manufacturing jobs in the U.S.
Moreover, China has used the accumulated wealth of its huge trade surpluses to finance its drive for hegemony in Asia and beyond.
With President Donald Trump threatening 10% tariffs on $300 billion more in Chinese exports to the U.S., Xi must decide if he is willing to end his trade-war tactics against the U.S., which have gone on during the Clinton, Bush and Obama administrations. If he refuses, will he accept the de-coupling of our two economies?
Only Trump has taken on the Middle Kingdom.
If the American people and Congress are willing to play hardball and accept sacrifices, we can win this face-off. The U.S. buys five times as much from China as we sell to China. The big loser in this confrontation, if we stay the course, will not be the USA.
For three years, the U.S. establishment has not ceased to howl about Russia's theft of emails of the DNC and Hillary Clinton campaign.
Yet the greatest cybercrime of the century was Beijing's theft in 2014 of the personnel files of 22 million applicants and employees of the U.S. government, many of them holding top-secret clearances.
Compromised by this theft, said then FBI Director James Comey, was a "treasure trove of information about everybody who has worked for, tried to work for, or works for the United States government."
"A very big deal from a national security ... and counterintelligence perspective," said Comey. And Xi's China, not Putin's Russia, committed the crime. Yet America's elites appear to have forgotten this far graver act of cyberaggresion.
Undeniably, Russia is a rival. But Putin's economy is the size of Italy's while China's economy challenges our own. And China's population is 10 times that of Russia, and four times that of the USA.
Manifestly, China is the greater menace.
Are Americans willing to make the necessary sacrifices to force China to abide by the rules of reciprocal trade?
Or will Trump be forced by political realities to accept the long-term and ruinous relationship we have followed since granting China permanent MFN status in 2001?
This issue is likely to decide the destiny of our relations and the future of Asia, if not the world.
Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of "Nixon's White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever." To find out more about Patrick Buchanan and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators website at

Feinstein’s Ties to China Extend Beyond Chinese Spy


August 6, 2018 Last Updated: August 7, 2018
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein speaks during a Committee hearing on Cambridge Analytica and data privacy in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. on May 16, 2018. (MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
News Analysis
Last week’s revelations that a Chinese spy served on the staff of Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) for almost 20 years, should be shocking no one.
The unidentified agent, who was in place as recently as five years ago, was Feinstein’s driver. He also served as a “gofer” in her Bay Area office and a “liaison to the Asian-American community.” He sometimes attended functions at the Chinese consulate, as a stand-in for the senator.
At the time the spy was discovered by the FBI, Feinstein was chairwoman of the Senate intelligence committee. Feinstein says she forced the agent into retirement, but no other staff were informed of the circumstances behind his exit, and no charges were filed.
Feinstein had been warned two decades ago that she might be targeted by Chinese intelligence.
The senator issued a statement on March 10, 1997, that the FBI had warned her and five other senators that the Chinese government might try to “funnel illegal contributions to her campaign and other Congressional campaigns, but she said the information had not influenced her position or her vote on any issue,” according to The New York Times.
“[Feinstein] said that while ‘the information was vague and nonspecific,’ she had concluded that she should ‘be very cautious’ in dealing with Asian-American contributors,” the NY Times report stated.
Feinstein would obviously be of interest to Chinese intelligence for the classified information she might possess through her position on the intelligence committee.
She might also be the target of “influence operations”—a subtler approach, by which Chinese operatives would try to steer Feinstein into promoting policies that might benefit the Chinese regime.
According to the article, “For many years, Ms. Feinstein has tried to promote friendship and trade with China, and she has countered critics of the Chinese human-rights record by emphasizing what she described in a Senate speech last year as ‘major improvements in human rights’ there.”

Conciliatory to Communists

Feinstein’s conciliatory approach to communist governments began in the mid-1950s, when she served in the Stanford University student government.
Before her senior year, Dianne Goldman, as she was then known, traveled to Europe on a student trip led by Stanford political science professor, James T. Watkins. The agenda included a possible meeting with Yugoslav communist revolutionary Marshal Josip Broz Tito.
In January 1955, a vigorous debate erupted on the Stanford student executive, over whether to support a proposed visit of seven Soviet journalists to the United States.
According to Stanford Daily reports of the time, executive member Sam Palmer asserted that “nothing can be lost in allowing them to come over.”
He was supported by both Goldman and Don Peck, who claimed that it was important to show “Russia that the United States is not an Iron Curtain country—that we are willing to let Communists enter.”
The ayes won, and Goldman went on to personally host the delegation from the Soviet Writers Union when they toured Stanford’s campus later that year.
Thirty years later, while serving as mayor of San Francisco, Feinstein issued an official city proclamation in support of that year’s World Festival of Youth and Students, held in Moscow.
This international propaganda event was organized by the Soviet-controlled World Federation of Democratic Youth and was supported in the United States by the Communist Party USA and similar groups.
Feinstein traveled to Moscow in December of that year as part of a trade delegation of 450 U.S. businessmen and public officials.
A little over a year later, on Jan. 27, 1987, Soviet Consul General Valentin Kamenev presented Feinstein with a Soviet streetcar: “A streetcar named desire.” Also present at the ceremony was Viktor Zhelezny, deputy chief of public transport for the Russian Republic.

Bridges to Communist China

Building bridges to the People’s Republic of China, however, seems to have been an even higher priority for Feinstein.
One of Feinstein’s first acts on becoming mayor of San Francisco in January 1979, was to visit Shanghai to establish sister-city relations.
The next apparent priority was re-establishing passenger airline service between China and the United States. Service was restored on Jan. 8, 1981, after a “32-year hiatus when a Boeing 747 with 139 Chinese passengers arrived exactly on time at San Francisco International Airport,” according to The New York Times.
Feinstein and Chinese Consul General Hu Ding-yi held a ribbon-cutting ceremony, “which included a cake, decorated with ‘CAAC [Civil Aviation Administration of China] Welcome to San Francisco,’ and two bottles of champagne.” Feinstein described the landing as “an historic and exciting occasion.”
Feinstein went on to visit Shanghai several times in her official capacity and built a close personal relationship with then-Mayor Jiang Zemin.
According to the San Jose Mercury: “He [Jiang] once invited her and her husband to see Mao Tse-tung’s bedroom in his old residence, the first foreigners to do so. Feinstein had entertained Jiang in San Francisco, dancing with him as he sang ‘When We Were Young.'”
This relationship proved fruitful in 1999, when President Bill Clinton was pushing to bring China into the World Trade Organization.
A visit to Washington that year by Chinese Prime Minister Zhu Rongji, which many had hoped would seal the deal, produced nothing. Relations got even worse after U.S. bombers accidentally destroyed the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade that May.
Feinstein, stepped in to offer assistance to the administration. She volunteered to use her personal relationship with now-Chinese regime leader Jiang, to get negotiations back on track.
In August 1999, the White House dispatched Feinstein to China, with a hand-written note to Jiang from President Clinton, urging a resumption of talks.
“Senator Feinstein played a critical role in paving the way for this critical trade agreement,” White House press officer Elizabeth Newman said.
Feinstein and Jiang met Aug. 16 in the Chinese coastal city of Dalian, where the senator handed over President Clinton’s letter.
In an interview with the San Jose Mercury in November 1999, Feinstein said, that she felt the only way China would enter into WTO negotiations again was with the backing of Jiang.
Feinstein said, in offering her services as an intermediary to Clinton and national security adviser Sandy Berger, “I said I’d be prepared to do it if they felt it would be helpful, and they said they did think it would be helpful and please do it.”
Jiang was “receptive and particularly pleased that Clinton had taken the time to personally write a note to him,’’ Feinstein said.
“I think he listened, and we had substantial discussions on the subject. … I was successful in getting the Chinese interested in beginning to resume negotiations on the subject,” Feinstein said in the November 1999 interview.

Human Rights

Significantly, Feinstein said she expected approval of the new trade status, which would remove the “annual congressional review that many believe continues to put pressure on China to reform its economy and human-rights record.”
In other words, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) would get the trade status it coveted, without having to do anything of significance to improve its abysmal human-rights record.
China was admitted to the World Trade Organization and has used that trade access to build the world’s second-strongest economy, and a world-class military.
If anything, the CCP’s human-rights record is worse today. Certainly, their repressive technologies are far more powerful.
At the time, Feinstein’s colleague, Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) expressed grave concerns about the deal.
“Once they get permanent (normal trade relations status), all leverage from the US on behalf of business is over because they have what they want permanently,” Pelosi said, in the San Jose Mercury article. “They have violated their agreements in terms of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, they have violated their agreements in terms of trade, they have violated their agreements on international covenants on human rights. Why is that we think they are then going to honor their commitments they make for WTO?”
All in all, it was an incredible victory for the Chinese government.
Feinstein has done more for the CCP than other any serving U.S. politician.
Correction: A previous version of this article misstated who led Dianne Feinstein’s student trip to Europe. The trip was led by Stanford political science professor, James T. Watkins. The Epoch Times regrets the error.

Fentanyl Flowing Into US Overwhelmingly Sourced From China

China’s “export-led economic strategy and lack of regulatory oversight” are responsible for most illicit and synthetic fentanyl in the United States, think tank Rand Corporation recently testified to Congress.
The global policy think tank told the U.S. House Homeland Security Committee that the rising opioid epidemic was initially fueled by an oversupply of prescription oxycodone and hydrocodone, but by 2019 morphed into an illicit synthetic opioid crisis causing “approximately two-thirds of all opioid overdose deaths.”
Pharmaceutically-pure fentanyl is an opioid that is 80-100 times stronger than morphine. The compound was approved in 1968 as a transdermal skin patch for pain management treatment of very sick cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy or hospice.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Enforcement Statistics reveal that fiscal year seizures of illicit fentanyl spiked from about one kilogram in 2013 to nearly 1,000 kilograms in 2018. With several U.S. regions transitioning away from heroin to synthetic opioids, the number of law enforcement fentanyl seizures within the United States vaulted from about 1,000 in 2013 to more than 59,000 in 2017.
Mexico drug cartels for decades have dominated traditional street-sourced opioids, such as heroin and diverted prescription painkillers. Law enforcement through 2004 would occasionally shut down a few American chemists’ small-scale production of illicit opioid powders. But the Mexican cartels in the mid-2000s started manufacturing about 7.5 percent pure fentanyl to enhance the potency of their heroin street sales in the United States.
Canadian and U.S. law enforcement reported that since 2013, “most synthetic opioids and precursors originate not from a single clandestine source, but from what could be many semi-legitimate manufacturers and vendors, most of whom are in China.”
The DEA reported that cartel drug labs in Mexico have a long history of importing the precursors to brew illicit methamphetamine from China. But over the last five years, semi-legitimate pharmaceutical suppliers have focused on shipping 90-percent pure fentanyl to the U.S. drug traffickers “via the international postal system and private express consignment carriers, such as FedEx and DHL, as well as by cargo.”
Rand states that China’s expansion of e-commerce and inexpensive shipping have made global trade cheaper and more convenient explains why China’s pharmaceutical industry is now the second largest in the world with 5,000 manufacturers producing more than 2,000 products. With annual production capacity of over 2 million tons, China is also “the single largest exporter of active pharmaceutical ingredients in the world.”
Combined with another 400,000 chemical manufacturers and distributors, some operating without legal approval, Rand states that China’s market reforms have far outpaced regulatory oversight of its pharmaceutical and chemical industries.
Rand warns that the scale of smuggling synthetic opioids from China may be evolving, as evidenced by the June 2018 seizure in Philadelphia of “50 kilograms of 4-fluoroisobutyryl fentanyl hidden in barrels of iron oxide in an air shipment from China.”
According to DEA, the lack of international control under the UN system of drug conventions has allowed Chinese manufacturers to export fentanyl precursors. In late 2016, the U.S. Department of State identified nearly 260 opioid producers with more than half located in China. Although the fentanyl precursor chemicals were finally added to China’s national drug schedules in early 2018, Chinese producers face little domestic scrutiny regarding restricted drug production and export.
After the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported 28,000 opioid deaths in 2017, mostly from fentanyl, U.S. President Trump and China leader Xi Jinping negotiated a December 2018 agreement during G-20 summit in Argentina that “China would enact policies to penalize the manufacturing and exporting of fentanyl.”
The regime had pledged from May 1 to include fentanyl analogues—drugs with a slightly different chemical makeup but are addictive and potentially deadly—in its list of narcotics subject to state control. But many U.S. lawmakers, officials and experts have been skeptical of Beijing’s willingness and ability to these changes.
Dissatisfied with the progress of trade talks, Trump on Aug. 1 announced the imposition of new tariffs on $300 billion of Chinese goods, blaming the regime for failing to make good on its pledge to buy more US farm goods and curb the flow of fentanyl.
China’s state-run media responded to the move saying the fentanyl crisis was a problem for which “the United States only had itself to blame.”
Liu Yaojin, deputy director of the China National Narcotics Control Commission, in an Aug. 3 interview with China’s broadcaster CCTV, reiterated this position, saying: “China is not the main resources of fentanyl in the United States … I think that the United States should solve the problem of the widespread abuse of fentanyl domestically.”
Chriss Street is an expert in macroeconomics, technology, and national security. He has served as CEO of several companies and is an active writer with more than 1,500 publications. He also regularly provides strategy lectures to graduate students at top Southern California universities. 



“Washington, D.C. (May 22, 2018) – The Center of Immigration Studies analysis of new Bureau of Labor Statistics data for the first quarter of 2018 shows that the labor force participation rate has not returned to pre-2007 recession levels, and relative to 2000 the rate looks even worse. Things are particularly bad for those without a college education. The problem is not confined to one area of the country; in virtually every state, labor force participation is lower in 2018 than in 2007 or 2000 among the less-educated.”

 Report: Billionaire Kochs 

Peddled Job-Killing Free 

Trade Agenda to Democrats

Vietnam says committed to 'free and fair' trade after Trump tariff threat

The pro-mass immigration Koch brothers, mega-donors to the GOP establishment, helped market endless free trade policies to Democrat politicians, a new book details.

A report by the Intercept outlines a recently released book titled Kochland by Christopher Leonard where the author alleges that brothers Charles and David Koch funded a 2007 report by the left-wing Third Way organization to warn Democrat politicians against the populist, economic nationalist arguments made by Lou Dobbs at the time.
The Intercept’s Ryan Grim and Andrew Perez report:
While Third Way’s report did not note any funding from Koch Industries or any related companies or organizations, it did offer thanks to Rob Hall, then a lobbyist for Koch Industries’ Invista division, “for his support in helping us conceive of and design Third Way’s trade project,” adding credence to Leonard’s claim that the Kochs were behind the effort. Hall was previously a Koch executive. The report also added: “The authors offer their sincerest thanks to Third Way’s Board of Trustees for their continuing intellectual support of Third Way and in particular for providing several of the key initial insights on which this paper is built.” Third Way’s board of trustees is a who’s who of Wall Street and corporate elites. [Emphasis added]
The paper argues that “neopopulists” like Dobbs were on the rise because Americans didn’t have faith in arguments made by free traders. Polls showed that people believed that “open trade,” as Third Way dubbed it, cost jobs, only benefited major corporations, made the U.S. weaker globally, and that trade barriers and tariffs were good policies that protected jobs. The argument on behalf of free trade, the report said, hadn’t taken into account the struggles of the middle class. “Our policies” — in favor of free trade — “do nothing to restore middle-class confidence in the future,” the report noted correctly. “Middle-class economic anxiety is widespread and legitimate. And fairly or not, much of the blame for this anxiety is landing squarely on trade.” [Emphasis added]
Though aligned for the last few decades with Republican lawmakers, the Kochs were major supporters of the economic policies of the Obama administration which sought to enter the U.S. into the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) which would have made it easier for multinational corporations to outsource additional American jobs to Vietnam and Malaysia.
American workers under TPP would have been forced to compete against workers in Vietnam and Malaysia — workforces that in some cases earn less than 60 cents an hour — thus forcing down U.S. wages.
In that effort, the Koch network spent up to $40 million lobbying for TPP before President Donald Trump took office on his economic nationalist platform and kept his promise in 2017 to kill the free trade deal with an executive order.
Most recently, the Koch network has committed to financially backing politicians, of either party, in upcoming 2020 elections who support their agenda of free trade-at-all-costs and amnesty for illegal aliens, as Breitbart News reported.
The free trade agenda has taken a stronghold on the Democrat Party in the 2020 Democrat presidential primary. A June poll by Civiqs/Daily Kos found that while Republican voters are overwhelmingly supportive of tariffs on foreign imports to protect American industries, 80 percent of Democrat voters took the pro-free trade position, calling tariffs “bad” for the economy.
This pro-free trade Democrat sentiment has been reflected in the 2020 Democrat presidential primary where candidates such former Vice President Joe Biden have defended the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) which helped eliminate about five million manufacturing jobs and shutter 70,000 U.S. manufacturing plants.
Likewise, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) has railed against Trump’s tariffs on China, usingthe false claim often deployed by free traders that tariffs are taxes on American consumers when in actuality, tariffs are fees placed on corporations which manufacture their products abroad instead of in the U.S.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.

The cheap-labor economic strategy also pushes Americans away from high-tech careers and sidelines millions of marginalized Americans, including many who are now struggling with fentanyl addictions. The labor policy also moves business investment and wealth from the heartland to the coastal cities, explodes rents and housing costs, shrivels real estate values in the Midwest, and rewards investors for creating low-tech, labor-intensive workplaces.

Mark Zuckerberg’s Group Lobbies Georgia GOP for More Low-Wage Labor

Facebook's CEO Mark Zuckerberg delivers his speech during the VivaTech (Viva Technology) trade fair in Paris, on May 24, 2018. (Photo by GERARD JULIEN / AFP) (Photo credit should read GERARD JULIEN/AFP/Getty Images)

Mark Zuckerberg’s group of West Coast investors is lobbying the GOP to keep illegal cheap labor flowing into Georgia.

The group’s political progress was spotlighted Tuesday, August 6, when a state GOP politician urged state officials to ignore the huge population of illegal migrant workers and renters in the state, according to a report in the Georgia Recorder:
Speaking at a lunch at Atlanta’s High Museum of Art, state Sen. Chuck Payne (R-Dalton) touted the diverse makeup of the 54th District he represents. Payne estimated his district is 42% Latino. He said many of the Latinos living in the district immigrated 25 years ago and “simply want a better life not only for themselves, but for their children and their grandchildren.”
“The people that I represent are honest, they’re hard-working, seeking to realize the American dream,” said Payne.
Payne opposed state legislation that would have forced Georgia residents who are not American citizens to obtain driver’s licenses clearly stating that they are not citizens. The measure died in committee in part due to Payne’s vote against it.
Zuckerberg’s lobbying group quickly endorsed Payne’s praise of cheap illegal labor: was created by West Coast billionaire investors — including Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg — to preserve the annual inflow of roughly one million new legal immigrants. Investors value the migrants because they reduce the cost of workers and raise overall spending on housing, products, and services such as food delivery.
For example, the group is urging the Senate to pass the S.386 legislation, which would provide roughly 100,000 green cards to Indian graduates (and their families) who take white-collar jobs in the United States at low wages for long hours and are treatedpoorly. has also lobbied for cheap labor in New York and Colorado, as well as in universities.
Payne lauded’s hardline approach against enforcement, according to the Georgia Recorder: “The senator described his work with the group as “a moral imperative and a political obligation to my constituents and the health of our country and economy.”
Payne’s statement was also lauded by’s lobbyist in Georgia, Sam Aguilar:
We’re proud to help drive smart immigration policy changes in Georgia that make our streets safer, encourage entrepreneurship, and contribute to sustained economic growth across our state. This year, we’re deepening our commitment to bipartisanship by working across party lines in support of access to higher education, and by working with a strong business coalition to identify – and stop – anti-immigrant bills before they hurt Georgia’s economy and our families.
Aguilar described the illegal migrants as Georgians, calling for an amnesty and continued high levels of legal immigration:
All Georgians deserve a government that treats immigrants with respect and dignity, and acknowledges their many financial contributions to our state’s economy and communities. Our long term goal is commonsense immigration reform that implements smart border security, protects and expands existing legal immigration avenues, and provides an earned pathway to citizenship for undocumented people. Expanding our work at the state level will help us to better achieve comprehensive reform, and we believe these policy goals will strengthen Georgia as we continue to demand the immigration changes our country needs.
Before working for, the Mexico-born Aguilar worked as a lobbyist for Galeo, an ethnic advocacy group that opposes state-level measures against illegal immigrants, such as state and local participation in the federal 287(g) program.

ICYMI: Last week, Georgia State Senator Chuck Payne joined renowned Atlanta artist @yehimicambron for a discussion of state and federal immigration legislation.

Check out more photos from the event here: 

View image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on Twitter

On August 7, D.A. King, who lobbies for enforcement of state immigration laws, shared’s tweeted endorsement of Payne, adding the comment, “This guy is w/o doubt the dimmest bulb in the legislature.”
 In response, another lobbyist, Jaime Rangel, tweeted a message to King saying, “Stay classy prick.”
Rangel is an illegal immigrant. He got a work permit from President Barack Obama’s 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) administrative amnesty. In May 2019, while working for, Rangel wrote:
Recently, I joined the Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and legislative and community leaders to review the recent state legislative session and strategize for the next. The event included both Republican and Democratic state representatives and members of the media and public. Together, we discussed how we might pass legislation that will grow our economy and revitalize our rural regions. Many of us shared the understanding that immigrants, especially Dreamers, are essential to our state’s success.
I used my spot at the table to suggest two legislative proposals that will increase Dreamers’ participation in the workforce and ensure they continue to contribute to our success. First, state lawmakers should pass a law allowing Dreamers who grew up in Georgia to pay in-state tuition at our public schools
Second, lawmakers should not support legislation that will put Dreamers’ driver’s licenses at risk …
Payne declined to respond to questions from Breitbart News. Todd Schulte, the director of, also declined to answer questions.
The tacit alliance of business groupsethnic lobbies, and Democrat politicians is also spotlighted by the debate over Georgia’s role in the 287(g) program, which allows state police to notify federal deportation agencies when illegals are arrested for local offenses.
The state’s Department of Public Safety is required by a 2011 state law to train officers in the 287(g) each year, but it is not on the federal list of trained agencies. Six other law enforcement agencies in Georgia are on the list, including Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Office.
In July, Latino groups tried to exclude King from a public debate over the 287(g) program, which promotes cooperation between federal deportation agents and local police. Galeo opposes the 287(g) enforcement program.
“We didn’t want to give him any legitimacy,” said Azadeh Shahshahani, advocacy directorfor Project South, a pro-migration group, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Marlene Fosque, a new commissioner in Gwinnett County, asked for the public event. The Gwinnett Daily Post reported July 31:
“Our sheriff’s department has participated in the 287(g) program for about 10 years, yet no one has brought the two sides together to decide what are the benefits of 287(g) and decide what is the impact,” Fosque said. “I’m a newly elected commissioner, so I’m trying to do new things. I pray at the end of this discussion, (attendees) walk away with a different perspective, or at least a new perspective.”
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution explained on July 31 why King was invited to the public meeting:
Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Deputy Shannon Volkodav said King was invited because he is a “long-standing supporter of the 287(g) program” and knowledgeable about immigration issues.
“We simply came to share our perspective, which was the purpose of tonight’s event,” Volkodav said. “It’s very disappointing that as many as three groups who were supposed to be here tonight chose not to come and simply share their perspective because they didn’t like one panelist.”
Gwinnett is one of the most diverse communities in the Southeast. About a quarter of its residents are foreign-born, and the county is estimated to be home to around 70,000 immigrants who are in the country without permission.
Only a small number of pro-migration activists appeared at the event, but their message was amplified by the state’s newspapers.
287(g) program meeting
Public meeting regarding enforcement of the 287(g) program. (Provided by D.A. King)
The effort to sideline King was also embraced by state media outlets, which downplayed the role of cheap labor, portrayed the debate as racist, touted “hate” claims pushed by the pro-migration Southern Poverty Law Center, and also portrayed King as a divisive troublemaker.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s reporter described King as a “controversial activist,” the headline said he “adds tension to gathering,” and the text claimed his opening statement “riled up” the debate’s attendees:
King is a self-described “proud American nationalist” and president of the Marietta-based Dustin Inman Society, which is named for a Woodstock teenager who died in a car crash with an undocumented immigrant in 2000.
The left-leaning Southern Poverty Law Center has dubbed the Dustin Inman Society an anti-immigrant hate group.
“By choosing D.A. King as its official spokesperson, the Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Office has blatantly shown that it operates on a platform of racism and complete disregard of any immigrant rights,” an Asian Americans Advancing Justice wrote in a news release.
But the report also ignored King’s comments and the role of immigration in suppressing companies’ payroll costs and boosting companies’ sales.
An August 8 report by the Center for Immigration Studies shows that 1.4 million working-age Georgians were not in the workforce. That is a five-point drop from 79.3 percent in 2000 to just 74.3 percent in 2019, the report shows. Amid the government-provided labor surplus, the average wage in the large Gwinnett County rose less than one percent — after counting inflation — from late 2017 to late 2018, according to federal data. Moreover, the inflow also provided the state’s real estate industry with a six percent rise in housing price in the year up to mid-2019, according to Zillow.
The state’s second-largest newspaper, the Gwinnett Daily Post, began its July 31 report on the meeting by spotlighting an advocate’s claim of organized racism:
“You’re a white supremacist!” one woman shouted from the back left side of the Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center auditorium.
With businesswoman Andrea Rivera, District 99 State Rep. Brenda Lopez Romero and local attorney Antonio Molina on the anti-287(g) side and Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Deputy Shannon Volkodav, ICE Southern Region Communications Director Bryan Cox and D.A. King, president of the Dustin Inman Society, which pushes for tougher immigration laws but has been labeled by the Southern Poverty Law Center as an anti-immigrant hate group, on the pro-287(g) side, the discussion ranged from quotations of bible verses to racial profiling to what ICE’s presence in Gwinnett will be if 287(g) goes away.
King rejected his critics’ claims that he is anti-immigrant and anti-immigration and noted he has pushed for enforcement of the nation’s immigration laws for more than a decade. His group, the Dustin Inman Society, is named after a youth who was killed by an illegal immigrant driver in 2000.
The need to enforce immigration laws and to repatriate migrants to their homes is made apparent every week, King told Breitbart News. On July 10, for example, the Marietta Daily Journal reported two crimes allegedly committed by Guatemalan migrants:
A young girl was followed and molested outside her Marietta house on July 4 after watching fireworks at Ron Francis Park with her family, police say.
The 12-year-old has spoken publicly about the ordeal, telling media her attacker repeatedly tried to grab and kiss her until her 10-year-old brother scared the man off.
On July 3, police arrested 17-year-old Baudilio Salomon Diaz Ambrocio, who faces three felony charges of rape, aggravated child molestation and aggravated sexual battery in relation to an incident at his Hedges Street home around 5 p.m. on July 1.
Police say the teen raped and molested a 7-year-old girl, who then needed surgery.
One of King’s priorities is the passage of a law that would require officials to publish routine reports about the number of illegals being held in Georgia jails who are eligible for repatriation, often via the 287(g) program. Without a legal requirement, “that will never, ever be allowed out … [because] it creates a definite, irrefutable, permanent official record” that can be used to weaken corporate and political opposition to enforcement, he said.
(Department of Corrections)
The state’s newspapers do not want to publish the information, partly because they are sympathetic to the Latino lobbies and the business groups, King added.
The population of illegals in Georgia is somewhere near 400,000, and the growing number of legal Latinos is weakening the GOP’s share of the vote and giving Democrats more confidence to reject GOP proposals, he said. “We are speeding to become the east coast version of California, ‘Georgiafornia’ — [and] Gwinnett [County] is a harbinger of the state in 10 years,” he said.
The GOP establishment is tied to business groups, and it does not want to fight for Georgians against cheap illegal labor, or even protect the GOP’s majority, he said.
The GOP passivity allows the pro-migration and cheap-labor groups to focus their energy on blocking King’s advocacy for enforcement, he said. “I am the target,” he said.
However, GOP voters actively want enforcement and will push back against GOP leaders — including Payne — who reveal their unwillingness to oppose the accelerating decline of GOP support in the state, he said. “Him siding up with and saying there’s nothing for the state to do about immigration, [ensures] he is being hammered on the Dalton Facebook page where he lives,” King said.
Payne is likely to face at least one primary challenger, said King, so “he is depending on the [donation] money from to overcome the public objections to illegal immigration in a state with more illegal immigrants than green card holders.”

The demand by investors for endless migrant labor has created a new thing: The US-India Outsourcing Economy. This no-regulation zone redirects new wealth into a few cities & a small elite. Elites want to expand it, so US college-grads get . 

EconomyImmigrationPoliticsFWD.usGeorgiaH-1BIllegal Alienslegal immigrationMark ZuckerbergS. 386salarieswages

US: Homelessness, housing insecurity top list of college student stressors as new year begins

This year’s # RealCollege survey, the largest annual assessment of basic needs security among college students in the United States, reveals that a staggering number of youth are experiencing food insecurity, housing insecurity and homelessness every day.
The survey, completed in fall 2018 and published in April 2019, by the Hope Center for College, Community, and Justice interviewed nearly 86,000 students from 123 different two- and four-year post-secondary institutions across the US and found that 45 percent of respondents reported being food insecure during the 30 days prior to taking the survey.
The breakdown of responses to the survey questions, known as the “Percentage Endorsing Statements,” provides a sobering view of the conditions facing today’s youth.
• 33 percent of four-year college students and 38 percent of two-year students agreed with the statement: “I ate less than I felt I should because there was not enough money for food.”
• 44 percent of four-year students and 51 percent of two-year students “worry whether my food will run out before I have money to buy more.”
• 8 percent of four-year students and 12 percent of two-year students “did not eat for a whole day because there was not enough money for food.”
Over half of the respondents said they were housing insecure over the previous year and 17 percent said they had been homeless. Housing insecurity includes a broad set of challenges, such as the inability to pay rent or utilities, or the need to move frequently. The study considers homelessness as a situation in which a person does not have a stable place to live. Students were identified as homeless if they responded affirmatively to a question asking if they had been homeless or they identified living conditions that are considered signs of homelessness.
Sixty percent of survey respondents at two-year institutions and 48 percent at four-year institutions experienced housing insecurity. The most commonly reported challenge is experiencing a rent or mortgage increase that made it difficult to pay, 30 percent of students at two-year institutions and 25 percent at four-year institutions. Eight percent of survey respondents at two-year institutions and 6 percent at four-year institutions left their household because they felt unsafe. Rates of student homelessness range from 10 percent to 32 percent at two-year institutions and 8 percent to 28 percent at four-year institutions.
To put these figures in perspective, a 2018 report by “PBS Newshour” found that more than 1.3 million primary and secondary students identified as homeless in 2017— a number equal to all students living in the state of Virginia.
The report highlights, “food and housing insecurity undermine academic success. Housing insecurity and homelessness have a particularly strong, statistically significant relationship with college completion rates, persistence, and credit attainment. Researchers also associate basic needs insecurity with self-reports of poor physical health, symptoms of depression, and higher perceived stress.”
Similar to the previous studies, the current research shows that working or receiving financial aid does not alleviate the stress of finding adequate housing. As the authors explain, “Students who experience basic needs insecurity are overwhelmingly part of the labor force. For example, the majority of students who experience food insecurity, 68 percent, housing insecurity, 69 percent, and homelessness, 67 percent, are employed. Also, among working students, those who experience basic needs insecurity work more hours than other students.”
Students who are forced to work while they go to school often come from families that are themselves suffering from poverty and are less likely to be able to help financially.
Likewise, most students eligible for a Pell Grant, a subsidy from the federal government for low-income students, are, in fact, more likely to be housing and food insecure.
A Pell Grant normally comes out to about $2,000 per year, or $1,000 per semester, and is available for families with an income of $30,000 or less. Despite the fact that this income level indicates the family is on the cusp of poverty, the families may still be expected to contribute up to $5,140 for the school year. This Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is money the student earns through working, or whatever money the parents can spare.
In addition, 88 percent of students who received Pell Grants in 2012 graduated with an average balance of $31,200 in student loans, compared to 53 percent of those who did not have a Pell Grant and borrowed $4,750 less, or about $26,000. Student loan debt in the US stood at a staggering $1.56 trillion in 2018.
Many campuses have been forced to try to address this issue on their own. Nearly every campus in the country now has a food pantry for students in need. Wayne State University (WSU), located in Detroit, for example, has something called the Helping Individuals Go Higher (HIGH) Program, which began in 2013 “with a goal to help homeless, precariously housed and financially challenged students to persist in their goal to earn a degree from Wayne State University.” The campus programs and resources on the WSU website include two counselors from the Department of Health and Human Services, a campus food pantry, National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY), more than a dozen area shelters, two soup kitchens, several social service agencies and homeless advocacy groups.
Despite these efforts, public school data reported to the US Department of Education during the 2016-2017 school year shows that in Michigan alone, an estimated 39,092 public school students experienced homelessness over the course of the year. Of that total, 611 students were unsheltered, 8,044 were in shelters, 2,514 were in hotels/motels, and 27,923 were doubled-up.
The report paints a stark picture of reality for young people in the most “advanced” capitalist country in the world. Thousands of young people are working two or three jobs while trying to get an education. Despite their best efforts they cannot make ends meet. They go hungry. They stay in shelters or with friends when they cannot afford a proper home. Millions then leave school burdened with tens of thousands of dollars of debt, which will keep them in poverty and shackled to the banks, for most of their lives.
The latest HOPE Lab survey is the most widespread study of homelessness among college students and, according to the research done by the authors, is likely the only study that looks specifically at the plight of community college students. As the authors of the report acknowledge, “Data describing the scope and dimensions of this problem, particularly at the college level, remain sparse. The GAO report noted that there are only 31 quality studies of campus food insecurity, very few of which involve multiple colleges. Among existing multi-institutional studies, four draw on data from the #RealCollege survey.” The reality is that the crisis of housing and food insecurity among students is even more severe than this survey reveals.


“For example, it would take an individual earning the median income 43 years to save up enough for a down payment in Los Angeles—and that’s not a down payment for a McMansion, it’s for a median-priced dwelling. In San Francisco, it would take that individual 40 years. In New York City or Miami, it would take 36 years.”
Millennial homelessness and unaffordable housing are some of the biggest problems facing America—but no one is willing to speak frankly about it.
The cheap-labor economic strategy also pushes Americans away from high-tech careers and sidelines millions of marginalized Americans, including many who are now struggling with fentanyl addictions. The labor policy also moves business investment and wealth from the heartland to the coastal cities, explodes rents and housing costs, shrivels real estate values in the Midwest, and rewards investors for creating low-tech, labor-intensive workplaces.

How Immigration Made 14 Million Millennials Homeless

Homeownership rates only tell half the story.

Imagine a homeless man. Does he have a long, frazzled beard and unkempt hair? What do his clothes look like? Probably ratty and full of holes—moth nests in the pockets. Maybe he has a shopping cart full of cans and a mangy dog named “Rusty.”
Although culturally ubiquitous, this characterization of the grizzled old hobo is profoundly misleading. In reality, most of America’s homeless people are young and healthy. Many attended college and work full-time jobs. They usually have permanent mailing addresses. Who are these people? Millennials.
Estimates suggest that 14 million Millennials still reside in their childhood homes. Why? Some prefer to live at home while they attend college. Others are lazy. But most cannot move out because rents are too high and houses too expensive. They are literally homeless—and millions would also be unsheltered were it not for their parent’s generosity.
How did it get to the point where an entire generation of Americans cannot afford to live where they were born and raised? Where millions must choose between remaining wards of their parents or leaving their friends and families behind in search of affordable accommodation—effectively becoming refugees in their own land?
One word: immigration.

Apples to Apples

The overwhelming majority (88 percent) of Millennials say they want to buy a home. Yet, just 4 percent believe they will be able to so in the coming year. Why? They cannot afford it: 72 percent say they cannot afford a home mortgage, while 62 percent say that the down payment is the biggest hurdle. This despair is reflected in generational homeownership rates.
Currently, 32.2 percent of Millennials own homes, compared to 60.4 percent of Gen-Xers and 75 percent of Baby Boomers. This alone is unsurprising: Millennials are younger and thus have had less time to save. But what’s interesting—and alarming—is that Millennial homeownership rates are far lower even when correcting for age differences.
For example, 45.4 percent of Gen-Xers owned homes when they were 25 to 34, as did 45 percent of Boomers.
Meanwhile, the Millennial homeownership rate for this age group is just 37 percent. In short, Millennials are 8 percent less likely to own a home than were their parents and grandparents at the same age.
While this may not sound like much, we must remember that Millennial homeownership rates are buoyed by banks (at the government’s behest) who offer effectively negative interest rates on mortgages—they literally pay Millennials to buy homes. If Millennials needed to pay the 10 percent interest that Boomers “enjoyed,” I suspect their homeownership rate would drop precipitously.
On top of this, Millennials are also far less likely to rent than were previous generations. As such, homeownership rates only tell half the story of Millennial dispossession.

Boiling the Frog

Although Millennials clearly want to buy homes, they cannot. Why? Houses are too expensive.
In 1973 the median household income was $9,265, whereas the median sales price of a new home in January, 1973, was $29,900—3.2 times the median household income. In other words, if the median family saved up every penny and put it towards a new home, it would take just over three years to buy a brand-new house.
This is in stark contrast to current prices. In January 2017, the median sales price for a new home was $317,400. This is 5.6 times the median household income of $56,516. In short, houses are 73 percent more expensive today (in real terms) than they were in 1973. This is the primary reason why disposable income has actually declined in America since the 1970s—not just for Millennials, but for all Americans.
Furthermore, it was easier for previous generations to save money for a down payment. Consider that the rate of return on a 10-year Treasury Bill in 1973 was 6.46 percent. Today, the rate is just 1.72 percent. Lower interest rates, combined with the fact that the price of shelter is increasing faster than inflation, is impoverishing our people.
Lastly, housing prices have not increased uniformly across the nation. In fact, they have actually decreased in those vast swathes of America which have suffered globalization-driven economic collapses. Thus, housing and rental prices have increased by much more than 73 percent in areas where Americans can actually find work.
For example, it would take an individual earning the median income 43 years to save up enough for a down payment in Los Angeles—and that’s not a down payment for a McMansion, it’s for a median-priced dwelling. In San Francisco, it would take that individual 40 years. In New York City or Miami, it would take 36 years.
Clearly, the Millennial generation has been dispossessed by high housing and rental prices.

The Source of the Nile

Since 1965, more than 45 million people have immigrated legally to America. During the same period, at least 20 million illegal migrants settled in America. Millions more arrive every year.
The scale of this mass migration is unprecedented in human history, and its consequences are not fully understood. But one thing we do know is that migration drives-up housing prices. How?
Migrants provide virtually unlimited demand for housing. This basic problem is compounded by two issues. First, the housing supply is relatively inelastic because as it takes much longer to build a home than to inhabit one.
Second, housing is a relatively scarce commodity since there is only a finite quantity of desirable land. Consider that the vast majority of immigrants settle in a select few metropolitan areas. Further, immigrants usually settle in areas already populated by their diaspora—they self-segregate, and in doing so cluster in relatively small areas which are not able to absorb or disperse their economic impact.
For example, California alone is home to more than 10 million immigrants. This works out to 26 percent of the state’s population. Meanwhile, immigrants comprise 22.9 percent of New York state. This explains why 17 of 25 of America’s least affordable housing markets are in California and six are in New York.
A number of academic studies demonstrate that immigration indeed raises housing prices and rents. Libertad Gonzalez and Francesc Ortega in a 2013 study found that immigration into Spain caused 52 percent of the overall increase in Spain’s real estate market.
Another paper published in 2012 by Canadian researchers Ather Akbari and Yigit Aydede found that immigration raised housing and rent prices in Vancouver, although the effect was not large. The authors postulated that the unexpected minor impact may be due to native residents leaving neighborhoods with high immigrant rates—“white flight.”
Abeba Mussa, Uwaoma G. Nwaogub, and Susan Pozoc tested this theory in a 2017 paper. Their findings were startling: for every 1 percent that immigration increased the population in a metropolitan statistical area (“MSA”), rents in that area increased by 0.8 percent. Additionally, domestic out-migration caused rents in neighboring MSAs to increase by 1.6 percent on average.
This effect was magnified when looking at housing prices: housing prices increased by 0.8 percent for every 1 percent immigrant-driven rise in population in the destination MSA, but by a whopping 9.6 percent in surrounding MSAs. In this way, immigration not only raised rents and house prices, it primarily raised them for native-born Americans!

Captive in Babylon

Millennial homelessness and unaffordable housing are some of the biggest problems facing America—but no one is willing to speak frankly about it.
The Left acknowledges that rents are “too damn high.” But because immigration is their Golden Calf they are only willing to entertain cosmetic “solutions” like rent control—solutions which have harmful iatrogenic effects.
The Right usually ignores the problem. If a solution is offered it invariably takes one of two forms. First, Millennials are told to “pull themselves up by their bootstraps.” This is obviously unhelpful advice: Millennials are drowning in a sea of 65 million immigrants and their 30 million children. Further, a large fraction of America’s blue-collar jobs has been shipped to China and Mexico.
There was a time in America when a high school graduate could get a job that paid enough to allow him to buy a house and support a stay-at-home wife and three children. This is impossible today. In fact, I know many young lawyers who cannot even afford to buy an apartment—much less have children. In essence, Millennials are all out of bootstraps.
The second “solution” is for Millennials to move to cheaper locations—to leave the dead-end town where they were born and seek prosperity in the wide world. This is not only stupid, it’s immoral.
To begin with, housing is cheap for a reason—usually, because the neighborhood is infested with degenerates or the economy is toast. Who cares if you can afford a home if you risk getting shivved in your driveway? Who cares if the rent is cheap if you can’t find work?
Beyond that, telling Millennials they need to move away from their place of birth is immoral.
People are not merely individual consumers. They are part of something far greater. They are members of a family, a community, and a nation. What does it profit America to separate sons from their fathers and infants from their ancestors’ graves—to uproot an entire generation—to steal from our youth their sense of home and belonging, and replace it with restless anomie?
Immigration is raising housing prices. The solution to this problem is not to further atomize America by encouraging a mass exodus of Millennials from their hometowns in search of cheaper rents. The solution is to cut the immigration rate and enforce existing deportation laws.
The solution is to put Americans—and America—first.

Every American (Legal) is one paycheck and one thousand illegals away from being homeless.

These figures will get much worse when the Democrat Party hands amnesty to 40 million illegals so they may legally bring up the rest of their family and vote Democrat for more!

Democrats Promise to Welcome Illegal Migrants ‘Like One of Our Own’ NEIL MUNRO

High cost of housing cuts into food, utilities study says


More than a third of Americans scrimp on essentials to pay for housing

Overall, 62 percent of renters and 47 percent of owners reported struggling to afford housing, according to a Freddie Mac survey. (

More than a third of Americans have been forced to cut spending on essential items like food and utilities to afford housing, according to a Freddie Mac study.
About 42 percent of renters and 33 percent of homeowners have had to reduce the money spent on essentials to cover the cost of housing during the prior two years, the report said. Overall, 62 percent of renters and 47 percent of owners reported struggling to afford housing.
“Our research confirms much of what we see in our business every day — affordability remains the essential factor when it comes to determining whether to rent or purchase a home, and the cost of housing is having a significant impact on households of every age, size and location,” said David Brickman, president and incoming CEO of Freddie Mac, as Yahoo reports. “For millennials and many Gen Xers, buying a home is no longer just a decision based on housing and housing costs — increasing pressure from student loans and the rising cost of child care are having a significant impact.”
Freddie Mac conducted the online survey over a four-day period. The poll collected data from 4,040 respondents over the age of 18, including 2,864 homeowners, 1,119 renters and 57 others.
“While we tend to focus primarily on wages not keeping up with house prices and misperceptions of down payments, we should also recognize that for many millennials and Gen Xers, the basic cost of living has gone up,” says Brickman, as Yahoo cited. “Heavy burdens from student loans and the rapidly rising cost of child care are clearly affecting the housing decisions of these individuals.”
Student debt has more than doubled over the past decade to more than $1.6 trillion, according to the Federal Reserve. Of millennials who rent, 51 percent said they based their choice of housing on their student loan payments.
The cost of child care has also risen over the past 30 years, according to the report. About 31 percent of renters and 45 percent of homeowners reported choosing cheaper housing to afford daycare, according to Freddie Mac.
About 35 percent of homeowners who reported trouble affording housing in the last two years had to move to find a more affordable place to live, an increase of nine percent since last August.







“Extensive research by economists like George Borjas and analyst Steven Camarota reveals that the country’s current mass legal immigration system burdens U.S. taxpayers and America’s working and middle class while redistributing about $500 billion in wealth every year to major employers and newly arrived immigrants. Similarly, research has revealed how Americans’ wages are crushed by the country’s high immigration levels.”  JOHN BINDER
"When we hear stories about the homelessness in California and elsewhere, why don't we hear how illegal aliens contribute to the problem?  They take jobs and affordable housing, yet instead of discouraging illegal aliens from breaking the law, politicians encourage them to come by lavishing free stuff on them with confiscated dollars from this and future generations."  JACK HELLNER
This policy of inflating the labor supply boosts economic growth for investors because it transfers wages to investors and ensures that employers do not have to compete for American workers by offering higher wages and better working conditions.

This policy of flooding the market with cheap, foreign, white-collar graduates and blue-collar labor also shifts enormous wealth from young employees towards older investors, even as it also widens wealth gaps, reduces high-tech investment, increases state and local tax burdens, and hurts children’s schools and college educations.

The cheap-labor economic strategy also pushes Americans away from high-tech careers and sidelines millions of marginalized Americans, including many who are now struggling with fentanyl addictions. The labor policy also moves business investment and wealth from the heartland to the coastal cities, explodes rents and housing costs, shrivels real estate values in the Midwest, and rewards investors for creating low-tech, labor-intensive workplaces.     JOHN BINDER

America's housing affordability crisis spreads to the heartland

 Prashant Gopal, Reade Pickert and Noah Buhayar

Low mortgage rates and thriving employment should be the recipe for a strong housing market. Instead, they’re deepening America’s affordability crisis.

What began on the coasts, in areas like New York and San Francisco, is now radiating into the nation’s heartland, as well as to cities from Las Vegas to Charleston, South Carolina. Entry-level buyers are scrambling to purchase homes that are in short supply, sending values soaring.

Expectations that the Federal Reserve will reduce interest rates this week will do little to change the sober reality: For many, prices have risen much faster than incomes, pushing homeownership out of reach for a new generation of hopeful buyers. That’s cooling the market, with the 2019 spring season shaping up as the slowest for sales in five years, according to CoreLogic Inc.

“All signs point to a housing market that should be doing really well and it’s not,” said Danielle Hale, chief economist for “The No. 1 constraint, despite low mortgage rates, is that people can’t find housing that they feel is affordable.”

Many buyers in expensive West Coast cities have already retreated after a surge in prices squeezed them out. But in other areas, demand is still robust, fueled by a strong economy and this year’s rapid decline in borrowing costs. There’s just too little to buy, and too much competition.

Dean Rusch, a 29-year-old chemical-plant worker, has been trying to buy a starter home for less than $200,000 in Louisville, Kentucky, since April. On three occasions, houses he planned to tour were snapped up before he could get there. He was outbid on another. He finally had an above-asking offer accepted Sunday on a house listed for about $199,000, but only after his agent locked the door during a showing, keeping another buyer out. For much of his hunt, it was slim pickings.

“I’ve looked at some crappy ones,” Rusch said. “I used to be in the fire department, and smelled some crazy stuff. But one smelled so horrible that it gave me a headache.”

Recent months have shown a growing divergence between the high and low ends of the U.S. market. Prices in the bottom third jumped about 9% in June from a year earlier, compared with 1.1% growth for the top third, data from Redfin show. Meanwhile, sales for lower-priced homes plunged almost 20% as buyers struggled to find properties in their range, according to Zillow.

“We have a lot more buyers pre-approved for mortgages than people closing on homes,” said Jeff Davis, Rusch’s agent. “What that means is the struggle is not in the financing. The struggle is in the inventory.”

That makes for a particularly bleak outlook for first-time buyers. The number of new homeowners created in the second quarter was the lowest since 2006, and just a third as many as a year earlier, the Census Bureau reported last week. Black homeownership fell to the lowest level since at least 1970.

Unequal Recovery

The housing recovery that began in 2012 has been unequal from the start. About 6 million Americans lost homes in last decade’s crash and needed time to rebuild their credit. Private equity firms such as Blackstone Group Inc. swept in to buy foreclosed properties at deep discounts and rented them back to many of those displaced former homeowners.

Now those people are back in the market, along with the bulging population of millennials eager for their first crack at homeownership. But many of the properties they want have already been picked over. Builders have focused on wealthier buyers willing to pay bigger price tags, and now some areas have too many expensive homes, and not enough where they’re needed.

Affordable homes disappeared first in technology and financial hubs like Silicon Valley and New York, where buyers with big paychecks pushed up prices. Now values are flattening after many would-be homeowners have been forced to the sidelines. In some areas, demand has also been hit by a pullback in foreign buyers and new federal limits on property-tax deductions -- as well as fears that a recession may be around the corner.

But even in traditionally affordable parts of the country, renters worry that if they don’t act, their piece of the American Dream will go to the higher bidder.

“People do at this point in the cycle start getting a little panicked that they need to get into the market,” said Jenny Schuetz, a fellow in the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institution. And, with lower mortgage rates, “a lot of people who were on the fence between renting and owning, may look at owning.”

In Louisville, fewer than one-fifth of listings were affordable to buyers in the bottom 30% of incomes in April, according to That’s down from 23% a year earlier and 38% in 2015. The trends are similar in other low-cost cities from Grand Rapids, Michigan, to Charleston, where only 6% of listings meet that affordability threshold.

Clogged Up

Las Vegas, which was hit hard by the last crash and then sharply rebounded, now is seeing a rapid decline in sales because there’s little on the low end worth buying. Many single-family houses were purchased by investors, and now are rentals. The result is there aren’t enough owners of entry-level homes to move up to the next rung of the ladder, said Thomas Blanchard, president elect of the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors.

“Our inventory is clogged up, causing a backup of people that want to buy,” Blanchard said. “It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy -- nobody is willing to move anywhere because they’re afraid they won’t find a house to buy.”

Mike Manesiotis, a 28-year-old who works in software sales in Charleston, says his friends in Seattle and the Bay Area would say home prices where he lives are a steal. But the salaries are also much lower, he said.

Manesiotis wants to live in or near downtown, within a short walk or Uber ride to bars and restaurants, and pay less than $350,000 -- near the median price for a single-family home in the city. But he hasn’t found anything he likes. The return of low mortgage rates hasn’t helped.

“It’s not the interest rate; it’s the sheer cost,” he said. “You’re spending $300,000 on a home that’s 1,000 square feet. You get two bedrooms, one bath and it needs a lot of work.”

More bad news for renters in SF's already insane market, report says

 Anna Marie Erwert 

Has San Francisco's rent finally convinced you that renting a one-bedroom alone isn't economically feasible? According to a new report, sharing a two-bedroom might not be cheaper for long.

Overall, San Francisco's rent didn't grow dramatically this year: In June rents were up 1.2 percent, according to This is less than the national inflation of 1.6 percent. But what is dramatic is the steady creeping upward of two-bedroom rents. Apartment List found that over the past six years, the median rent for a 2-bedroom apartment in San Francisco has increased by 10.7 percent.

In 2014, the median rent for a two-bedroom in San Francisco was $2,804 ... Today, median rents in San Francisco stand at $3,100 for a two-bedroom.

Apartment List isn't the only online rental site to notice this trend. Rental site Zumper's most recent National Rent Report showed that "one bedroom rent have another flat month, staying at $3,700. Two bedrooms, on the other hand, jumped 4.9 percent to settle at $4,720."

Why the disparity?

The disparity in median rent price reports is down to methodology. Every rental site collects data differently, and their findings reflect calculations based on their particular methodology. Zumper says it aggregates data from "over one million active listings [and] includes new constructions but excludes listings that are no longer available or are currently occupied."

Apartment List, on the other hand, takes a different approach. "Data from private listing sites, including our own, tends to skew toward luxury apartments, which introduces sample bias when estimates are calculated directly from these listings," says the site's methodology section. To address this issue, Apartment List uses median rent statistics from the Census Bureau, then "extrapolate them forward to the current month using a growth rate calculated from our listing data."

Whichever method we think more accurate, what is not in dispute is that renting a two-bedroom is getting more expensive in San Francisco.

And if the past six years are an indicator, it looks poised to get even more so.

Why? Because, frankly, one bedrooms are already pushing maximum affordability, while previously two bedrooms were more affordable if shared. The relatively less expensive unit has the most room to grow in price, and growing it is.

Moving may not be the answer

Lest you hope that moving south or east of the city will make life easier, you should know that this June, San Jose is the fourth-most expensive city for renters looking to share, with two-bedrooms hovering around $3,000 a month by Zumper's figures and $2,670 by Apartment List's.

Oakland comes in sixth, with two-bedrooms at around $2,800 according to Zumper and $2,200 according to Apartment List.

What can you rent for SF's new median 2-BR rent?

If we average Zumper and ApartmentList data, we come up with $3,910. That means $46,920 per year on rent alone, sharing a two-bedroom in San Francisco.

The gallery above shows you what you get for your money, as well as data used to make these projections.

Overall, it seems if you want to spend less by renting a two-bedroom, you better do it soon. Renting these units is getting more expensive by the day.

Anna Marie Erwert writes from both the renter and new buyer perspective, having (finally) achieved both statuses. She focuses on national real estate trends, specializing in the San Francisco Bay Area and Pacific Northwest. Follow Anna on Twitter: @AnnaMarieErwert.

Homeless Surge Hits Oakland, Silicon Valley, San Francisco Suburbs


San Francisco saw its homeless population rise by 17% in the last two years, but the rise in many surrounding counties has been worse.

A report Monday by Curbed San Francisco summarizing the figures noted: “Five out of nine Bay Area Counties—i.e., all of those not located in the North Bay—saw their homeless counts spike during the same period, with each other county showing worse homelessness surges than SF.”

As Breitbart News has noted, homelessness has been rising rapidly in urban areas throughout the state. San Francisco’s rise in homelessness has been accompanied by a spike in Los Angeles that some say has brought the city to the brink of an outbreak of deadly disease — perhaps bubonic plague. San Diego recently suffered an outbreak of hepatitis A among the homeless, partly due to a plastic bag ban making it harder for homeless people living on the streets to dispose of excrement.

Now the problem is leaving downtown areas and hitting the suburbs. Curbed reports:

•        San Mateo County: rise of more than 20% in two years

•        Santa Clara County: rise of more than 31% in two years

•        Alameda County: rise of more than 42.5% in two years

•        Contra Costa County: rise of 42.8% in two years

In addition, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Monday that homelessness in the City of Oakland alone rose 47% over the past two years.

The Curbed report adds some “good news”: ‘While the rest of the Bay Area saw the levees break, homelessness actually declined significantly all over the North Bay during the same period.”

President Donald Trump has warned that federal intervention may be necessary to deal with the problem — a suggestion that has met with protest from the state’s Democratic leaders.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He earned an A.B. in Social Studies and Environmental Science and Public Policy from Harvard. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside St

ory of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

Exclusive–Michael Savage Backs Trump on San Francisco: ‘Junkies Shoot Up in Front of Children’
William Morrow Paperbacks
 29 Jul 20191,416

Talk radio legend and New York Times bestselling author Michael Savage is once again sounding the alarm on the deterioration of San Francisco, California, in the wake of President Donald Trump criticizing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) over the conditions in her “failing” district.

On Sunday, President Trump shifted his fierce critiques from Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) over Baltimore to Pelosi, warning San Francisco will soon decline beyond repair unless immediate action is taken. “Speaking of failing badly, has anyone seen what is happening to Nancy Pelosi’s district in San Francisco.” the president wrote on Twitter Sunday. “It is not even recognizable lately. Something must be done before it is too late.”
In a statement to Breitbart News, Savage, a longtime resident of the Bay area, joined President Trump in eviscerating California’s Democrat leadership by highlighting San Francisco’s worsening crime and crumbling infrastructure:
Where has all the Federal and State highway funding gone? The streets are worse than some African nations! Even the roadway going on to the iconic Golden gate bridge is a disgrace! The streets are littered, bums rule the sidewalks. Junkies shoot up in front of children. People are afraid to go out at night. Assaults by bums are swept under the radar by the non-newspaper. Over 30,000 cars are broken into each year! Police do nothing because the psycho-lib ‘judges’  dismiss those few cases that are prosecuted. Need I mention the well-known epidemic of human feces on the sidewalks? Have you ever eaten dinner and seen a filthy human being drop his pants and crap outside the restaurant as you are attempting to eat? Where are Pelosi, Feinstein and the other oh-so compassionate rulers?
The conservative media star’s condemnation of Pelosi comes as Democrats are expressing outrage over President Trump spotlighting the worsening state of long-run Democrat cities. On Saturday, the president blasted Cummings for shouting at Acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan during a recent congressional hearing and said Baltimore, the Maryland Democrat’s district, has “far worse” conditions than immigration detention centers at the U.S.-Mexico border.
“Rep, Elijah Cummings has been a brutal bully, shouting and screaming at the great men & women of Border Patrol about conditions at the Southern Border, when actually his Baltimore district is FAR WORSE and more dangerous. His district is considered the Worst in the USA,” he tweeted. “As proven last week during a Congressional tour, the Border is clean, efficient & well run, just very crowded. Cumming District is a disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess. If he spent more time in Baltimore, maybe he could help clean up this very dangerous & filthy place.”
Without skipping a beat, Democrats raced to denounce the president’s comments, calling them racist and bigoted.
“Rep Cummings is a champion in the Congress and the country for civil rights and economic justice, a beloved leader in Baltimore, and deeply valued colleague,” Pelosi replied in a tweet. “We all reject racist attacks against him and support his steadfast leadership.”
President Trump shot back at the criticism, saying his comments directed at Cummings were in no way racist.
“[T]here is nothing wrong with bringing out the very obvious fact that Congressman Elijah Cummings has done a very poor job for his district and the City of Baltimore.” he tweeted. “Just take a look, the facts speak far louder than words!”
The president then said Democrats were playing the race card in an attempt to discredit his argument.
“The Democrats always play the Race Card, when in fact they have done so little for our Nation’s great African American people,” he stated. “The Dems should stop wasting time on the Witch Hunt Hoax and start focusing on our Country!”
Through 2015-2018, Baltimore homicides topped 300 each year and are on track to pass such figure in 2019, making it the fifth consecutive year to occur. As President Trump pointed out, the city does indeed suffer from a rodent problem, which was detailed in the documentary film Rat Film, which aired on PBS in 2018. The Baltimore Sun even published an opinion-editorial in November 2016 — Trump’s right: Declare Baltimore a ‘disaster’ and rebuild it — in which Sean Kennedy, a visiting fellow at the Maryland Public Policy Institutecalled for the city to be official label a “disaster” and undergo extensive rebuilding effort.
Aaron Klein, Breitbart News’ Jerusalem bureau chief and senior investigative reporter, contributed to this report. 

Democrats Promise to Welcome Illegal Migrants ‘Like One of Our Own’

 30 Jul 201978

Democrats in the July 30 CNN Democrat debate promised to welcome foreign migrants, and none mentioned migrants’ economic damage to blue-collar Americans’ wages and rents.

“Immigrants don’t diminish America, they are America,” said Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, who told Fox News in February 2019 that “we need workers” because unemployment was too low for business groups. “We have people all over the country who simply want to work and obey the law,” she said about the nation’s population of illegal immigrants. 
“We need to expand legal immigration,” said Sen. Liz Warren. “We need to create a path for citizenship, not just for ‘dreamers’ but for grandmas, and for people who have worked in the farms and students who have overstayed their visas.”
She reaffirmed her promise to end decriminalization of illegal migration: “We cannot make it a crime when someone comes here.”
Migrants are Americans and should not be criminalized, argued Montana Gov. Steve Bullock. “You don’t have to decriminalize everything [but] what you have to do is have a president in there with the judgment and decency to treat someone who comes to the border like one of our own,” he said. 
“If [migrants] are seeking asylum, of course, we want to welcome them. We’re a strong enough country to be able to welcome them,” said Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan. 
“Americans wants comprehensive immigration reform … [with] protections for ‘Dreamers,’ [and] making sure we have a pathway to citizenship for the undocumented,” claimed Pete Buttigieg, using the establishment’s code phrase for mass amnesty.  
Buttigieg also reaffirmed his promise to decriminalize illegal migration, saying: “If fraud is involved, that is suitable for the criminal statute — if not, then it should be handled under civil law.”
His White House would stop “criminally prosecuting families and children for seeking asylum and refuge,” promised Beto O’Rourke. “Asylum” is a legal term, complete with legal tests and deportation rules, but the term “refuge” suggests O’Rourke is making an open-ended promise of welcome. 
O’Rourke also promised to decriminalize illegal migration: “I expect people who come here to follow our laws, and we reserve the right to prosecute them if they do not.”
“If a mother and a child walk thousands of miles on a dangerous path, in my view, they are not criminals,” said Sen. Bernie Sanders. “They are people fleeing violence.”
Immigration Numbers:
Each year, roughly four million young Americans join the workforce after graduating from high school or university. This total includes roughly 800,000 Americans who graduate with skilled degrees in business or health care, engineering or science, software or statistics.
But the federal government then imports about 1.1 million legal immigrants and refreshes a resident population of roughly 1.5 million white-collar visa workers — including approximately one million H-1B workers and spouses — plus roughly 500,000 blue-collar visa workers.
The government also prints out more than one million work permits for foreigners, tolerates about eight million illegal workers, and does not punish companies for employing the hundreds of thousands of illegal migrants who sneak across the border or overstay their legal visas each year.
This policy of inflating the labor supply boosts economic growth for investors because it transfers wages to investors and ensures that employers do not have to compete for American workers by offering higher wages and better working conditions.
This policy of flooding the market with cheap, foreign, white-collar graduates and blue-collar labor also shifts enormous wealth from young employees towards older investors, even as it also widens wealth gaps, reduces high-tech investment, increases state and local tax burdens, and hurts children’s schools and college educations.

The cheap-labor economic strategy also pushes Americans away from high-tech careers and sidelines millions of marginalized Americans, including many who are now struggling with fentanyl addictions. The labor policy also moves business investment and wealth from the heartland to the coastal cities, explodes rents and housing costs, shrivels real estate values in the Midwest, and rewards investors for creating low-tech, labor-intensive workplaces.

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