The Top 10 Most Cost-Effective Countries To Get A High-Priced Higher Education

The Top 10 Most Cost-Effective Countries To Get A High-Priced Higher Education

A new study by Online Gaming Groups has evaluated over 30 countries to determine the most cost-effective higher education systems, focusing on the percentage of average annual income spent on educational expenses.

This analysis included countries with the highest university fees, and additional costs such as living and rent were considered to accurately assess the full financial commitment needed for education.

By examining the ratio of costs to salary, the study ranked these nations. Belgium emerged as the leader, offering the most cost-effective higher education. In contrast, Israel was noted for having the highest educational expenses on the list, despite having the fewest universities and the lowest quality of higher education.

Belgium tops the list of countries offering the most cost-effective higher education, with annual expenses, including tuition fees, averaging $28,574. The average annual salary in Belgium is $53,890, with 53.02% of this salary spent on living and university expenses. This balance between earning and learning costs underscores the country’s commitment to making education accessible.

Switzerland ranks second, with average annual expenses of $51,013 and an average salary of $95,490, dedicating 53.42% of salary to education and living costs. Despite having the highest living costs in the ranking, Switzerland’s substantial average salary helps mitigate these expenses, making its education system remarkably cost-effective.

In third place, South Korea presents a contrast with more affordable living conditions and a lower average salary of $36,190. Here, 61.01% of the salary goes towards education and living expenses, with the country having the highest education costs among the top three.

The Netherlands, fourth on the list, has annual expenses of $37,697 against an average salary of $60,230, spending 62.59% of it on education and living costs. The country ensures broad accessibility to higher education with relatively moderate educational costs.

France is fifth, balancing university and living costs against an average yearly salary of $45,290. With 63.50% of the salary allocated to these costs, France maintains a balance between accessible education and high educational quality.

Ireland follows as the sixth most cost-effective country for higher education, with average expenses of $55,129 and a salary of $79,730, dedicating 69.14% of it to education and living. Despite not having the highest costs, the cumulative annual expenses are considerable.

Japan ranks seventh, where 70.14% of the average annual salary of $42,440 is spent on higher education, indicating a premium level of education, as evidenced by the high number of universities and education costs.

Italy, eighth, spends 70.51% of an average salary of $38,200 on education, reflecting the country’s rich educational heritage and the high quality of its education system, ranked 14th worldwide.

Australia is ninth, requiring families and students to invest significantly in education, with 72.97% of the $60,840 average salary going toward educational and living expenses, indicative of the country’s high standards of living and educational quality.

Lastly, Israel, despite having the highest education costs on the list and ranking lowest in the number of universities and education quality, spends 78.97% of the average salary of $55,140 on education, rounding off the list of the top ten countries with cost-effective higher education.

Tyler Durden
Wed, 04/17/2024 – 23:20

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The Teachers’ Unions Are More Political than Ever

The Teachers’ Unions Are More Political than Ever

Authored by Larry Sand via American Greatness,

In the past, teachers’ unions concentrated on fighting to keep all teachers employed—competent or otherwise—laying off teachers by seniority when necessary and soaking taxpayers every chance they could. While those activities are still part of their mission, they have, over time, increasingly delved into the political/social realm, promoting Black Lives Matter, Critical Race Theory, DEI, class warfare, gender-bending, etc. And their current level of engagement is staggering.

Americans for Fair Treatment, a national nonprofit organization that educates public employees about their rights in a unionized workplace, recently released a report detailing the National Education Association’s (NEA) financial filings from Sept. 1, 2022, through Aug. 31, 2023.

The NEA declared that its political spending totaled $50.1 million during the fiscal year, though the true number is much higher. During the most recent reporting period, the union disclosed that it spent “$126.3 million on ‘contributions, gifts, and grants,’ which is where most unions detail their charitable giving.”

However, a closer look at the union’s “contributions, gifts, and grants” shows that the NEA is directing more money towards political causes than it reports. For example, the union contributed $4.1 million to the State Engagement Fund, a progressive advocacy group, and $3.5 million to For Our Future, a Democratic super PAC. Another $500,000 was donated to the Color of Change Education Fund, which has ties to progressive billionaire George Soros.

The disclosure also reveals that the union spent $10 million more on politics and lobbying than it did representing its members. While NEA’s representational spending increased by about $2 million compared to the previous reporting period, spending on politics and lobbying increased by $8.5 million.

It’s worth noting that as a 501(c)(5), the NEA and, in fact, all unions have a special tax-exempt status with the IRS, which is accorded to “Labor, Agricultural, and Horticultural Organizations.”

Local teachers’ unions are also involved in political spending. In Chicago, where just 15% of Chicago’s 8th-grade students are proficient in math and 21% are proficient in reading, the Chicago Teachers Union is focused on other things. As the Illinois Policy Institute documents, the union spent nearly three times more on politics in 2023 than the year before, and just 17% of its spending was on representing teachers.

142-page leaked document contains hundreds of Chicago Teachers Union contract demands, including 100% abortion coverage to pay for surrogates and housing students in old schools.

The CTU is also demanding a 100% electric bus fleet and fuel-efficient drivers’ education vehicles, installation of solar panels and other facility upgrades, compensation, and medical benefits for absences related to “verbal assault,” etc.

In preparing for CTU’s collective bargaining talks with the city, the union’s president, Stacy Davis Gates, asserted the new contract would cost taxpayers $50 billion.

Importantly, the teachers’ unions’ political involvement does not stop with spending. They now routinely make policy statements and demands, most notably on the recent strife in the Middle East.

In November, the United Educators of San Francisco contended that Israel’s military campaign violated the United Nations Universal Declaration on Human Rights but made no mention of the brutal Oct. 7 attacks or the captivity of over 200 hostages.

In December, a pro-Palestinian “teach-in” was organized by the Oakland Education Association, and members developed special lesson plans in defiance of the local school board. The same month, Becky Pringle, president of the National Education Association, demanded a permanent truce in the Middle East on Twitter—a position that was later reaffirmed by the organization’s board of directors.

In late January, the American Federation of Teachers officially called for a cessation of hostilities.

Additionally, Heritage Foundation scholar Jay Greene reports that a measure adopted by the NEA-affiliated Massachusetts Teachers Association board in December declared, “The MTA president and vice president will urge the president of the NEA to pressure President Biden to stop funding and sending weapons in support of the Netanyahu government’s genocidal war on the Palestinian people in Gaza.”

Greene also notes that the executive committee of the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers passed a resolution condemning “the system of Israeli occupation and apartheid.” However, backlash from teachers and the community led the union to issue an apology.

What can be done about the onslaught of union political activity?

The big-picture solution is for teachers’ unions to be banned. Period.

“All government employees should realize that the process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service. It has its distinct and insurmountable limitations when applied to public personnel management.”

Progressive icon Franklin Delano Roosevelt issued the above caveat about government unions. Additionally, George Meany, president of the AFL-CIO for 24 years, once stated, “It is impossible to bargain collectively with the government.”

Both men understood that the very nature of government makes it wrong for its leaders to negotiate with any union. When government unions bargain, they often sit across the table from people they helped put in office with generous campaign contributions. And when these unions go on strike, they walk out on the taxpayer.

However, getting rid of these established unions is highly unlikely, primarily because political spending by government unions inevitably favors union-friendly candidates.

Prohibiting collective bargaining would reduce union power, but only five states currently prohibit that activity for public employees: Texas, Arkansas, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia.

Ultimately, teachers hold the key. If they stopped paying dues, the unions would cease to exist. Legally, they can now do so courtesy of the Supreme Court’s 2018 Janus decision, which asserted that no teacher or any public employee has to pay a penny to a union as a condition of employment.

The good news is that since the SCOTUS ruling, 20% of workers in non-right-to-work states have dropped out of their unions, according to a report from the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. The bad news is that 70% of teachers nationwide still willingly pay union dues.

As a teacher, if your politics are on the right, centrist, or maybe you are apolitical, do you really want hundreds of your dues dollars going to the leftist causes that the state and national unions regularly support?

It is with no sense of irony that NEA boss Becky Pringle asserts that politics’ “creeping influence” in classrooms threatens education. “All of the politicians and pundits who are trying to politicize our school demonize teachers, which is new, who are not focused on what our kids need or what our parents say they want for their kids.”

Pringle has it backward. Clearly, the number one educational “influence creeps” are the teachers’ unions.

*  *  *

Larry Sand, a retired 28-year classroom teacher, is the president of the non-profit California Teachers Empowerment Network – a non-partisan, non-political group dedicated to providing teachers and the general public with reliable and balanced information about professional affiliations and positions on educational issues. The views presented here are strictly his own.

Tyler Durden
Wed, 04/17/2024 – 23:00

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Forget Cocoa, Coffee. There’s A “Squeeze Risk” Building In The Tin Market

Forget Cocoa, Coffee. There’s A “Squeeze Risk” Building In The Tin Market

Tin prices on the London Metal Exchange have surged 27% this year, landing on the radars of some institutional desks. Other commodities closely monitored by hedge funds include cocoa, coffee, Brent crude, copper, and gold.

Bloomberg notes that LME data for the tin market shows the aggregate net-long position held by financial investors surged to the highest level ever, with data going back to 2018. 

These bullish bets have pushed tin prices well into the $32,000 handle in recent trading sessions. 

Bloomberg notes that the “big bull” positioning by institutional investors comes as major supply disruptions hit top producers across Indonesia, Myanmar, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Also, the metal, a critical component of modern technology and used primarily as solder to connect electrical components and semiconductor chips, is the latest AI trade investors have been piling into. 

“Every data byte and every electron travels through hundreds of solder joints that connect it all together,” Jeremy Pearce, head of market intelligence and communications at the International Tin Association, said in an email interview with the media outlet. He pointed out that tin’s trade thesis is that demand will rise in tandem with AI computing demand at data centers. Recall our note, “The Next AI Trade.” 

Like Nickel and other commodities, tin is prone to mega short squeezes. Traders discovered this in 2022 after a once-in-a-generation squeeze broke the nickel trading on LME. 

“Some market participants feel there could be a risk of a squeeze,” Ding Wenqiang, senior analyst at one of China’s largest metal researchers, Mysteel.com, told Bloomberg. He added, “They are paying close attention to the movements of the big bull in the May contract.”

Tightening supplies come as tin inventories plunged 47% so far this year to 4,045 tons. The metal’s spot price trades at a premium versus the three-month futures contract, producing a structure known as backwardation. 

Nickel prices are rising as commodity prices have likely based and entered a ‘weak bull’ market, according to new research from HSBC Bank.

Rising commodity prices are more bad news for Fed chair Powell’s fight against the inflation monster.

Tyler Durden
Wed, 04/17/2024 – 22:40

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It’s Not Rate Hikes That Are “Sparking An Economic Boom”, It’s The Fiscal Stimulus

It’s Not Rate Hikes That Are “Sparking An Economic Boom”, It’s The Fiscal Stimulus

By Michael Every of Rabobank

The Polybius Crisis

Take a step back (in time), and see that our neoliberal, debt-addled, was-lower-for-longer global system is not just in a Polycrisis but a Polybius Crisis – referring to the ancient Greek historian.

Polybius

Methodology: Polybius was first to argue ‘consider your source’: today, media and markets still spout and swallow propaganda. He argues we can’t look at history in just one area, as what happens everywhere effects what is going on everywhere else: but modern markets have monomanias for one asset class, geography, and ideology: markets-first neoliberalism.

Yet while 2024 opened with talk of 7 Fed cuts, then 6, 5, 4, 3, and 2, it just saw calls that US rate cuts are needed to lower inflation (because of the slump in housing supply that recent US data won’t help); chatter of 2 rate hikes; and now Bloomberg asks, ‘What if the Fed’s Hikes Are Actually Sparking an Economic Boom?’ Is neoliberalism in crisis, or is this a new copium given Fed Chair Powell just said he’s prepared to keep rates steady “as long as needed”?

Bloomberg notes that high rates = stimulus is an MMT heresy, but huge budget deficits mean high rates put more cash into people’s pockets (as they take it from others’). Yet it’s fiscal deficits, not rate hikes, that do that trick, another neoliberal shibboleth. (And an MMT one: Stephanie Kelton argues rate hikes contribute to the deficit, so cutting them would lower it… as if supply-side inflation and speculation with new liquidity aren’t connected to rates.)

Meanwhile, trade and FX are next. Perhaps-future US Treasury Secretary Lighthizer mocks the argument the US saves too little because Americans are profligate; (correctly) says low savings / large US trade deficits are caused by foreign industrial policy; forcing the trade deficit to narrow means savings would rise; and wants low corporate taxes, low regulation, subsidies, tariffs, and a “sensible” trade policy to fight mercantilism. If you don’t understand that throws global markets into a tailspin, like the economists Lighthizer mocks, you don’t understand that system.

On security: Polybius would not be surprised that today we have a failing global security architecture because US National Security Advisor Sullivan doesn’t say ‘Si vis pacem, para bellum’, but ‘Quaeso, sume prandium meum argentum!’ (“Please, take my lunch money!”) That approach was always going to lead to a Ukraine-Russia war, or similar; an Israel-Iran clash; and, in parallel and conflating with both, Taiwan-China tensions.

There is now frenetic activity to try to moderate any Israeli counterstrike on Iran to prevent a regional conflagration; Daniela Gabor tweets from the IMF/World Bank spring meeting, “geopolitical conflict is paralyzing everything… including on climate finance.”; and ECB President Lagarde says rate cuts are coming provided there are no inflation shocks(!) As I asked yesterday, ‘who leads and who is led?’ It’s no longer central banks.

On politics: Polybius argues societies start as ochlocracy (mob rule); a strong leader starts monarchy (rule by one: the ‘spare’ gets a Netflix deal); power turns this to tyranny (‘democracy’, says the Ivy League); an elite revolution sets up aristocracy (rule by the best); they also lose virtue, and we get oligarchy (‘neoliberalism’ to everyone but economists); they get overthrown by the people for democracy (rule by the majority: ‘tyranny’ says the Ivy League); but people lack virtue, so this turns to ochlocracy; and the cycle restarts. Polybius argues it’s best to combine monarchy, aristocracy, and democracy.

However, as we loom closer to the EU and US elections, and what populism may emerge, he’d probably repeat: “…enticing and corrupting the common people in every possible way… they have made the populace ready and greedy to receive bribes, the virtue of democracy is destroyed, and it is transformed into a government of violence and the strong hand. For the mob, habituated to feed at the expense of others, and to have its hopes of a livelihood in the property of its neighbours, as soon as it has got a leader sufficiently ambitious and daring… produces a reign of mere violence. Then come tumultuous assemblies, massacres, banishments, redivisions of land; until, after losing all trace of civilisation, it has once more found a master and a despot.” (Or ‘decolonisation’ as they call it at US Ivy League schools and on social media.)

On Great Power struggles: Polybius notes in less than a lifetime Rome went from city-state to the master of the world by winning the Punic Wars vs. Carthage. History can sometimes move fast:

  • He speaks of the importance of fate – big things can ‘just happen’: today, we price out term premia from yield curves, and think they won’t.
  • Rome defeated Carthage after humiliating defeats to Hannibal due to its strategic depth and the superiority of the Roman constitution.
  • Its checks and balances prevented any one part of the state from dominating others; and “when we see good customs and good laws prevailing among certain people, we confidently assume that, in consequence of them, the men and their civil constitution will be good also, so when we see private life full of covetousness, and public policy of injustice, plainly we have reason for asserting their laws, particular customs, and general constitution to be bad.”
  • In Carthage, “nothing is disgraceful that makes for gain”; in Rome, “nothing is more disgraceful than to receive bribes and to make profit by improper means… The Carthaginians obtain office by open bribery, but among the Romans the penalty for it is death.”
  • The most important difference for the better which the Roman commonwealth appears to me to display is in their religious beliefs.”
  • Carthage employed foreign mercenaries; the Romans didn’t (at first). “The result is that even if the Romans have suffered a defeat at first, they renew the war with undiminished forces, which the Carthaginians cannot do. For, as the Romans are fighting for country and children, it is impossible for them to relax the fury of their struggle; but they persist with obstinate resolution until they have overcome their enemies.”
  • Rome’s focus on “Carthago delenda est” (Carthage must be destroyed) proved the rallying point for their society in the end.
  • Polybius argues Carthage’s constitution couldn’t overcome that “There is in every body, or polity, or business a natural stage of growth, zenith, and decay… so far as the strength and prosperity of Carthage preceded that of Rome in point of time, by so much was Carthage then past its prime, while Rome was exactly at its zenith, as far as its political constitution was concerned. In Carthage therefore the influence of the people in the policy of the state had already risen to be supreme, while at Rome the Senate was at the height of its power: and so, as in the one measures were deliberated upon by the many, in the other by the best men, the policy of the Romans in all public undertakings proved the stronger; on which account, though they met with capital disasters, by force of prudent counsels they finally conquered the Carthaginians in the war.”

A glance at Polybius underlines our Western neoliberal crisis. Consider his comments on good laws and customs in an election year where the leading US presidential candidate is in a New York courtroom charged with a crime some legal experts say is a misdemeanour, but with a stack of serious cases elsewhere, as allegations of double standards are thrown; and as Belgium tried to ban a political meeting involving former UK PM Truss and Nigel Farage for being dangerously ‘far right’: dangerously far out, maybe. Or look to Polybius’s views on corruption, as it spreads; religion, as religiosity falls; and on mercenaries, as the West’s willingness to fight for their own country evaporates, according to survey data, just as the need to fight grows more urgent.

Yet while Rome and the US both rose to power within a lifetime, the former went on for a great many more, becoming an empire that took more than 650 years to fall in the West, and another millennium in the East. Time may be on the West’s side yet. Could Western checks and balances help it find a new rallying cry like “something construenda est”? And as importantly, what is ‘Team Carthage’ doing? There are two sides to every Great Power struggle.

To summarize, however, reading biased reports not objective analysis; monomaniacal reports not broader thinking; ignoring the Classical world’s lessons on realpolitik; that how we run societies has been an issue for thousands of years, not since 2016; and that Great Power struggles are always with us, ensures you will swept away in a Polybius Crisis. Ancient wisdom isn’t perfect; but it’s arguably a lot better than relying on a contemporary world’s decided lack of wisdom.

“NEOLIBERALISM DELENDA EST”

Tyler Durden
Wed, 04/17/2024 – 22:20

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Alleged Illegal Immigrant Who Couldn’t Speak English Caught Trying To Rob Bank Using A Translator App

Alleged Illegal Immigrant Who Couldn’t Speak English Caught Trying To Rob Bank Using A Translator App

You’d figure if you’re in the country illegally, you’d at least have the courtesy to learn the language before trying to hold up a bank…

But basic human decency is dead these days, as was exemplified by a Venezuelan-born man named Yeixon Brito-Gonzalez, who was caught trying to rob a bank in Sandusky, Ohio last week, according to PJ Media

The police were able to apprehend him because he couldn’t speak English and resorted to using a translation app to communicate his demands to the bank tellers. When the tellers – probably wondering if they were being “Punk’d” – did not comply, Brito-Gonzalez, evidently embarrassed, simply left the scene, the report says.

The perp failed to prepare even basic English phrases like “give me the money” or bring an accomplice who could speak the language, the report says.

Upon locating Brito-Gonzalez, the police brought along a Spanish-speaking officer to interrogate him but he tried to play dumb. The report says it was later revealed that he told the teller he needed “money in a bag”.

Don’t we all…

Sandusky Police Chief Jared Oliver said: 

“I have been in law enforcement for over 20 years and this is the first time I encountered something like this, someone using a translator app to try and rob a bank. First time our officers have dealt with it too.”

It’s has not been confirmed whether Brito-Gonzalez is in the U.S. illegally, though his lack of ID at arrest implies this might be the case.

Nevertheless, while federal authorities will likely question him, there are doubts about enforcement under the current administration, suggesting he may not face stringent consequences (as has been the running theme across the U.S. since Joe Biden has been in office). 

Sandusky is a small city nestled along the shores of Lake Erie. Known primarily for its role as a major hub for rail and water transport, Sandusky has been a vital part of Ohio’s economy since its establishment in 1818. 

Tyler Durden
Wed, 04/17/2024 – 22:00

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Bidenomics – Inflation Persists And Jobs Decay: Gingrich

Bidenomics – Inflation Persists And Jobs Decay: Gingrich

Authored by Newt Gingrich via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

Last week brought bad news for the American people and President Joe Biden. Inflation persists and jobs are decaying.

President Joe Biden speaks about Bidenomics at CS Wind, in Pueblo, Colo., on Nov. 29, 2023. (Michael Ciaglo/Getty Images)

On inflation, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported prices rose 3.5 percent between March 2023 and March 2024. This bad number is far higher than the U.S. Federal Reserve’s goal of 2 percent inflation—and it follows three years of price increases.

Inflation continues to build even after the Federal Reserve pushed interest rates to their highest point in 23 years.

Much to the Fed’s dismay, its restrictive private sector policies are being more than offset by the Biden administration’s massive deficits. While the Fed is trying to take liquidity out of the system and force a slowdown to lower inflation, the Biden administration keeps pumping borrowed money into the economy.

The contradiction between the Fed and the Biden White House increases the scale of government and shrinks the private sector. Furthermore, since the federal government is the world’s largest debtor, high interest rates translate into an even bigger federal deficit.

So, the long run consequences of Bidenomics on inflation is staggering. Measured from the time President Joe Biden took office, the prices Americans are paying have skyrocketed. In just three-and-a-half years, the price of eggs is up 49.3 percent, gasoline is up 47.5 percent, peanut butter is up 40 percent, butter and margarine are up 32 percent, electricity is up 28.3 percent, air fare is up 32.7 percent, used cars are up 20.9 percent—and the list continues.

The American people feel these price increases, and they are unhappy. Most Americans rate the economy as poor, while only 38 percent consider the economy is in good shape. (Under President Donald Trump, 65 percent rated the economy as good.)

As the Wall Street Journal editorialized:

“[I]f voters are downbeat about the economy, persistent inflation is a good reason. Price increases across the Biden Presidency are unlike anything Americans have seen in recent decades. They have been a particular shock for low-income and younger workers who haven’t accumulated a wealth cushion in the stock market or housing values.

Mr. Biden is the main architect of his inflation problem—and ours.

Mark Halperin with his usual insight asserted: “The story of who will win this election might just be that voters demand a change from the mind-boggling high cost of almost everything. The prices are just too damn high.”

As if inflation was not a big enough problem there is a an even bigger problem growing with the employment news.

As Matt Weidinger outlined in AEI Ideas:

[I]n the past 12 months, employment among US natives is down by 651,000. Those declines were focused on men, a group President Biden already has increasing difficulties winning over.

“In contrast, employment among foreign-born individuals grew by 1,266,000 in the past year, driven by the rapidly growing population of foreign-born individuals ages 16 and over in the US, which rose by almost 2.6 million during the past year. “

“The gap between US native and foreign-born employment is even starker since last summer. Since its peak in July 2023, employment of US natives has fallen by over 2.0 million, while employment of the foreign-born has risen by almost 1.4 million. “

From President Biden’s standpoint, Weidinger highlights a deadly detail:

“Friday’s jobs report reveals that unemployment among Black or African American individuals rose in March for the third consecutive month, to over 1.4 million, the highest level since January 2022. That group’s unemployment rate has risen from 5.1 percent to 6.4 percent in the past year.”

The jobs numbers contain even more problems for President Biden because part-time jobs are increasing much faster than full-time jobs. More and more Americans are finding themselves working two or three jobs—often with little or no benefits—just to make ends meet in an economy of constantly rising prices.

So, Bidenomics means rising prices, fewer jobs, more part-time employment, and a desperate sense that things are just not working.

Still, the propaganda media is trying hard to paint a pretty picture. CNN, for example, called the latest monthly jobs report a “blowout.”

But everyday Americans know when they go to the grocery store, pay monthly bills, or fill up their cars that life has gotten harder under President Biden.

The trademark of Bidenomics may be the steady shrinking of products. Take a Trump era candy bar or box of cereal and place it next to the same product today. In most cases, the price increased, and the unit size has shrunk.

Simply put: Bidenomics means you get less for more.

If this economic failure persists for another seven months—and it almost certainly will—then Bidenomics may be Biden’s downfall.

From Gingrich360.com

Views expressed in this article are opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

Tyler Durden
Wed, 04/17/2024 – 21:40

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Why Does A Woke Maryland Private School Want To Know The Gender Identity Of Young Students, And If They Had “Oral Sex”?

Why Does A Woke Maryland Private School Want To Know The Gender Identity Of Young Students, And If They Had “Oral Sex”?

The parents of an elite Baltimore County, Maryland, private school, where tuition ranges from $32,000 for lower school to as high as $38,000 for upper school per year, are beyond frustrated. Many can’t voice their concerns about the woke mind virus infecting the school’s administration because contracts signed during the Covid era silence them from speaking out. 

The St. Paul’s School in the Greenspring area, just above imploding Baltimore City, and nestled in steeplechase horse country, continues to have a weird fetish about asking young, vulnerable students about their “gender” and “sexuality.”

In January, parents went bonkers when an “identity inventory” was handed out to young boys. The questionnaire asked them if they were “Cisgender” or “Transgender” or “Gender Non-Conforming” or “Agender.” 

After the school hushed up several parents, making an example out of at least one, where the parent’s kids were suspended then reinstated after the parent spoke out on social media about wokenism being injected into the curriculum, the school could not help itself by going down the woke rabbit hole – once again. 

Yet more parents have contacted us about another survey given to young girls at the school. This time, it’s called the “Independent School Health Check,” and it was administered by the Indiana University Center For Survey Research. 

Parents are particularly livid with these two questions (and the answers)

  1. “Do you currently identify your gender as being the same or different from your sex assigned at birth?”
  2. “How do you describe yourself?”

One parent told us this is a “grooming mechanism …” 

One very concerned parent asked why their kids are data mined by the school like Google does for internet search browsers.

Another parent voiced concerns that other private schools in the area have “gone full woke,” while public schools in the state are imploding. 

The lesson learned is parents need to heavily vet schools and or get involved to ensure their children are not being brainwashed by dangerous wokeism. 

As for the concerned parents, now is the best time to homeschool – or how about – starting a non-woke school that actually focuses on learning instead of toxic gender nonsense.

Tyler Durden
Wed, 04/17/2024 – 21:20

via ZeroHedge News https://ift.tt/LaIf1jB Tyler Durden

Tucker Carlson: Congress Is Lying To You About FISA

Tucker Carlson: Congress Is Lying To You About FISA

Authored by Tucker Carlson via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours)

The U.S. House is expected to vote Friday on a two-year extension of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, commonly known as FISA. This transcript has been edited for length and reprinted with permission from Tucker Carlson.

A few years ago, we learned conclusively that, in fact, the FBI and the federal intel agencies—the dozen or more federal intel agencies we have, for some reason—had been working secretly against Donald Trump’s presidential campaign.

The Justice Department building on a foggy morning in Washington, on Dec. 9, 2019. (Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

Trump had whispered about this, then shouted about it, was roundly denounced as a conspiracy nut, a lunatic. But in the end, he was vindicated. It was true.

These agencies spied on Trump, and they leaked some of what they learned to the media, which used it against Trump. Then these agencies concocted false stories about Trump. They tried to crush Trump completely in 2016 and then for the entire course of his presidency. Then they did the same thing in 2020 during the presidential election.

And they’re doing it still. They’re trying to put him in prison for the rest of his life. So if we take three steps back, what you have here is what we’re seeing now.

For the third time in three consecutive cycles, secretive federal agencies are trying to rig our presidential election. This is what the Democrats refer to as democracy, and they’re trying to defend it. But of course, it’s the opposite of democracy. It’s, in fact, the end of democracy in any semblance of a constitutional republic we ever had.

If you have a secret police force threatening people, spying on them, and working secretly the levers of political power, then you don’t have a democracy. You have no control over really anything as a voter.

So if there’s one thing the Republican Party, the opposition party, should be doing in response to this, right now, it’s fighting back against this descent into totalitarianism. They should be working to return freedom and democracy to the country. They should defend the Constitution. They should rein in these agencies, Washington secret police.

But you will not be surprised to learn they’ve been busy doing just the opposite. So if you’re wondering why no one is going to prison for any of this, now that we know what actually happened, well, the reason is in part a law called FISA, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, has been around a long time.

Sen. Teddy Kennedy first proposed it, by the way, back in the mid-1970s. And that law allows the federal government to spy without a warrant on foreigners outside the borders of the country. The idea is bad people are doing bad things against us. We need to know what they are, and we can’t bother to go to a court to get a warrant every time we want to know, but it will never be used against American citizens. Well, of course, now we know it has been at scale.

That law, FISA, has made it possible. So that law is now up for reauthorization in the House of Representatives. And amazingly, the new speaker of the House, Mike Johnson of Louisiana, has spent the last couple of weeks doing all he can to get that law reauthorized.

In other words, to allow the federal agencies to continue to spy upon and punish people who disagree with them. In other words, Mike Johnson’s own party. Republicans, Trump voters. Mike Johnson has been working to do that, and that effort failed [Wednesday] because members of Congress heard from their constituents or came to their senses, saw the truth in a dream.

Whatever happened, they stopped Mike Johnson from doing that for the moment. So that’s a good thing. And you ought to be celebrating. And even if you didn’t know it was happening—and a lot of people didn’t because it got very little media coverage. But of course, this is a temporary victory. Like all bad things, like that Chlamydia you got in a hot tub in Cabo in college, it will come back.

This attempt to spy on you, an American citizen, without a warrant because you’ve been politically disobedient. Why will it come back? Because it’s what they really care about. And so, before it does come back, it’s worth just a very quick autopsy.

What just happened? What do we just see so we can learn a couple of important lessons?

The first lesson we’re going to learn is that a lot of powerful people in the Congress are liars. They lie without shame, in fact, with pride. And they do so at the behest of or because of blackmail instituted by the intel agencies. And at the head of that list would be the chairman of the House Intel Committee, Mike Turner of Ohio.

We’re going to play a clip from Mike Turner of Ohio saying exactly the opposite of what is true here. Is Mike Turner reassuring you that face, it would never, under the face of law, the U.S. government would never be allowed to spy on you without a warrant, because that’s unconstitutional. It never happened. It never will happen. And if you think otherwise, you’re probably one of those UFO-believing nutjobs who want to stop doing ayahuasca.

Here’s House Intel Committee, pawn of the intel agencies, Mike Turner of Ohio:

“They are—we are not surveilling foreigners in the United States. We’re not surveilling Americans, United States. Those individuals who say that is a warrantless search of Americans’ data are just not telling the truth. These are foreigners abroad. They’re a select group of individuals who are a national security threat. If you’re an American and you’re corresponding with ISIS, yes. If we’re, if we’re spying on ISIS, your communications are going to be captured. And you would want us to do that. All Americans would want us to try to make certain that we keep ourselves safe from these terrorist, outside terrorist groups, organizations. We are not spying on Americans. This is not a warrantless surveillance program. This is foreigners who are abroad only.”

Every word of that is a lie. And we don’t need to guess. And I hate to use that pronoun, but I specifically don’t need to guess, because that actually happened to me.

The [National Security Agency] broke into my text messages, read them, passed them to news organizations in order to discredit me, and then admitted that they did that. They spied on me and they did it under FISA because I was daring to text with a foreigner outside our borders.

So Mike Turner knows that, he’s the chairman of the intel committee. He knows he’s lying, but he’s doing it anyway because it’s that important to preserve that core power.

If you have the power to spy on someone and then to leak the information that you gather or manipulated and then leak it in order to control that person, that’s a major power. In fact, that’s a bigger power than any voter in this country has. And so he’s acting on their behalf when he lies to you. And so it shouldn’t surprise you that they want to keep that power.

They want to keep it so badly that over the last week, U.S. government officials did something that may not have precedent in Washington. They lobbied members of Congress directly. They, in the words they used in Washington, they whipped the bill.

Officials from the Department of Justice called, among others, [Rep.] Chip Roy of Texas to demand that he vote for FISA reauthorization.

Imagine that—DOJ, Department of Justice, the federal law enforcement agency, called Chip Roy and said, “You got to do this.” Think about that.

Is there any group in this country more powerful than the Department of Justice? They can put you in jail, and they’ve shown a willingness to do that. They could put kiddy porn on your computer. They’ve probably done that too. And everybody who serves in Congress knows that, and everybody’s afraid of them—along with the CIA and NSA and a bunch of other, three other agencies.

Members of Congress are afraid of them because they know the consequences of disobedience. And so for them to call directly a member of Congress would be like the FBI coming to your House on Election Day and demanding that you vote for their designated candidate. And then having access to the record of who you actually voted for, as they do in the Congress.

Can you imagine? You’d be highly motivated to vote for their candidate, wouldn’t you? Yes, you would. So they’re willing to do anything to get this enshrined in law, because it gives them legal cover to subvert democracy, which is their program, of course.

Read the full transcript at TuckerCarlson.com. Reprinted by permission from The Daily Signal, a publication of The Heritage Foundation.

Views expressed in this article are opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times or ZeroHedge.

Tyler Durden
Wed, 04/17/2024 – 21:00

via ZeroHedge News https://ift.tt/0HaxAgU Tyler Durden

Sanctuary Cities Set Migrant Sex Offenders Free Instead Of Handing Them Over To ICE

Sanctuary Cities Set Migrant Sex Offenders Free Instead Of Handing Them Over To ICE

Long painted as safe havens of humanitarianism by the establishment media, sanctuary cities are slowly being exposed for the underlying hypocrisy that motivates their policies.  Red states such as Texas and Florida have been very effective in pulling back the curtain, using the busing of illegals to sanctuary cities as a tool to force Democrats to stand by their own open borders principles (or abandon them out of convenience). 

As we witnessed when Ron DeSantis flew a few dozen illegals to the elitist neighborhoods of Martha’s Vineyard, wealthy leftists were quick to buy cheap take-out food for the migrants and pose with them for the news cameras.  Then, when the media was done with their propaganda segments the residents kicked those same migrants out of town within 48 hours and shipped them to the nearest military base.  One of the richest enclaves in the entire US and they refused to stand by their supposed convictions for more than two days; not one migrant was allowed to stay or work in Martha’s Vineyard.

Democrats were so embarrassed by the incident that they tried to have DeSantis sued and charged with “human trafficking.”  The Martha’s Vineyard incident marked the beginning of a surge in migrant buses to cities like New York and Washington DC.  All it took was ten thousand to fifteen thousand illegals to overwhelm city welfare programs and subsidies.  Mayors in both metro areas have called for a declaration of emergency and federal aid, including National Guard troops.  In the meantime, the media blames conservative states for the disaster even though it is the sanctuary status of these cities that makes the crisis possible.   

The message being sent is that the political left needs media cover for their policies because their policies constantly fail (or succeed in being destructive, depending on how you look at it).  They simply never intended for the surge of illegals to land on their doorstep.  One area that is consistently damaging to the progressive image is the catch and release of numerous illegal migrant criminals who go on to harm innocent American citizens.  The growing list of incidents surrounding migrant crime is creating a PR nightmare for Democrats. 

People are starting to ask – If Democrats knowingly release dangerous migrant offenders onto the streets, are Democrats then accountable for the people those migrants go on to harm?  For example, Haitian migrant Cory Alvarez, who was arrested for raping a 15 year old girl with disabilities in Massachusetts, entered the United States using the Biden administration’s CHNV parole program.

This program allows Cubans, Haitians, Nicaraguans, and Venezuelans to fly into the U.S. after they’ve supposedly been vetted and have a sponsor in the U.S.  Clearly the vetting process is non-existent and the flights are designed to allow illegals to bypass any existing border protections and claim “asylum”, thus making them semantically “legal.”  CHNV frequently transports migrants to sanctuary cities where they can avoid scrutiny by ICE.  But the problem goes further…

A Colombian child sex offender in the US illegally was released onto the streets by California authorities rather than sent for deportation, due to sanctuary state laws.  The criminal, who’s identity has not been revealed publicly, was convicted of unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor and sentenced to four years in prison in December 2022, according to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).  Fifteen months later he was freed by San Bernardino County and a request from ICE to be notified of his release was not honored.

The migrant traveled across the country to Boston, MA where he was finally apprehended by ICE agents.  Agents are frequently forced to work around sanctuary laws in Boston as well, recovering multiple migrant sex offenders daily and deporting them without the help of the city. 

In the span of only two weeks in February 2024, ICE apprehended at least 275 illegals with sex offense convictions during a nationwide operation.  Imagine how many are still living within our borders because of sanctuary status.

Sanctuary cities are run by local governments that have vowed to refuse to work with federal immigration authorities in any capacity, and some have even set out to obstruct or sabotage ICE agents in the apprehension of dangerous suspects.  But what can be learned from the trend of blue cities catching and then releasing the very worst kinds of criminals on the planet simply because they are migrants?

It’s interesting that Democrats are usually so rabid about federal government control and intervention in most areas of American society, but when it comes to securing the border and vetting foreign immigrants, one of the few jobs that the feds should be doing today, leftists suddenly oppose federal presence.  The lesson here is that progressives are not willing to negotiate their open border agenda in the slightest, even to prevent child victimization.  This forces us to ask an important question:  If they aren’t willing to compromise to protect the most vulnerable of American citizens, why should conservatives compromise with them on overall immigration?       

Tyler Durden
Wed, 04/17/2024 – 20:40

via ZeroHedge News https://ift.tt/O3Gurfb Tyler Durden

Excused Juror Reveals Selection Process For Trump’s ‘Hush-Money’ Trial: ‘All Have Prior Opinions’

Excused Juror Reveals Selection Process For Trump’s ‘Hush-Money’ Trial: ‘All Have Prior Opinions’

Authored by Jack Phillips via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

A juror who was excused from serving on the Manhattan trial of former President Donald Trump provided details about the questions potential jurors were asked.

Kara McGee an excused juror, speaks to the media outside Manhattan Criminal Court in New York City on April 16, 2024, during the second day of the trial against former President Donald Trump for allegedly covering up hush money payments linked to extramarital affairs. (Kena Betancur/AFP via Getty Images)

Kara McGee told media outlets outside the courtroom on Tuesday that she was dismissed but said she believes she could be impartial, adding still that it would be “very difficult for anyone really in this country to not come to this without prior opinions.”

“We all have prior opinions on the defendant, unless you’ve been living in a cardbox,” she said, adding that she was excused because of her job in the cybersecurity sector.

Regarding her personal feelings on President Trump, the woman said, “I’m not a fan.” The main reason why, she said, is because of how she believed he handled the COVID-19 pandemic response.

But Ms. McGee provided some insight on the questions that were asked of the jurors.

“One of which is: Do you have opinions about the ability for a former sitting president to be tried in a court of law? Which I think the way people answered that showed how they felt about case,” she said. “The other one was: Do you have any opinions about legal limits for campaign finance donation amounts? Which I believe was another one that was kinda meant to gauge feelings about the particular case,” she added.

As of Wednesday morning, seven jurors have been selected with five more slots remaining. The judge has indicated that he will choose about six extra jurors to serve as backups.

Responding to the jury-selection process, President Trump wrote on Wednesday: “I thought STRIKES were supposed to be ‘unlimited’ when we were picking our jury? I was then told we only had 10, not nearly enough when we were purposely given the 2nd Worst Venue in the Country. Don’t worry, we have the First Worst also, as the Witch Hunt continues!”

The former president is on trial for allegedly falsifying payments that were made during the 2016 campaign meant to bury potentially negative stories about him. Prosecutors say that he delivered $130,000 to former lawyer Michael Cohen to deal with a story about an alleged affair with adult actress Stormy Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, which the former president has denied.

In court papers, President Trump’s lawyers have argued that the payments were legitimate expenses. He’s pleaded not guilty to the charges, which are felonies, and said it’s an attempt to denigrate his 2024 presidential chances.

Before entering the court on Tuesday, President Trump described the judge, Juan Merchan, as a “Trump-hating” official who “shouldn’t be on this case.” Earlier, he said that the judge is “conflicted” because his daughter works as a consultant for the Democratic Party and has had high-profile clients including Vice President Kamala Harris.

It’s a trial that is being looked upon and looked at all over the world … they’re looking at, analyzing it. Every legal pundit, every legal scholar said this trial is a disgrace,” the former president added.

The judge has refused to recuse himself in the case. On Monday, Judge Merchan again said he wouldn’t recuse himself and added that the matter will not be considered again until an appeals court renders a decision.

Also Monday, Judge Merchan told President Trump that he has to show up in court every day it’s in session, adding that “there will be an arrest” if he doesn’t. It means that the former president will not be able to hold many campaign events, including in many key battleground states, for the next several weeks.

Former president Donald Trump visits a bodega store in upper Manhattan where a worker was assaulted by a man in 2022 and ended up killing him in an ensuing fight in New York on April 16, 2024. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

The former president visited a New York City bodega where a man was stabbed to death, with the aides saying he chose the store because it has been the site of a violent attack on an employee, a case that resulted in public criticism for the Democratic district attorney, Alvin Bragg, now prosecuting him.

The visit was President Trump’s first campaign appearance since his criminal hush money trial began, making the presumptive GOP nominee the first former president in U.S. history to stand criminal trial.

They want law and order … every week they’re being robbed,” the former president said of businesses in New York, as he tried to compare his prosecution with what happens on New York streets. “You know where the crime is? It’s in the bodegas.”

“Papito Trump is coming. Yeah!” said one passerby ahead of the former president’s arrival. Another woman who spoke to The Associated Press said that the former president “speaks the truth,” making reference to illegal immigration. “I think that he will make a difference,” she added.

“I love this city,” the former president told reporters after emerging from the store. “We’re going to straighten New York out.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Tyler Durden
Wed, 04/17/2024 – 20:20

via ZeroHedge News https://ift.tt/Nfgwo2D Tyler Durden