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Favorite Link Friday February 5, 2016

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Quote of the Week: "Some people's idea of free speech is that they are free to say what they like, but if anyone says anything back, that is an outrage." --Sir Winston Churchill


11 most important moments of the Dem debate

1. “A very artful smear” In one of her most energetic salvos of the campaign, Clinton ripped Sanders for “attacks” and “insinuation” suggesting that anyone who takes campaign contributions has been “bought.”

2. Clinton "100 percent confident" emails won't drag her down Pressed by moderators about the steady email controversy that's raised trust issues among voters, Clinton delivered a forceful rejection of concerns it would undermine her candidacy should she become the Democratic nominee. "This is an absurdity. I think the American people will know it’s an absurdity," she said, suggesting that Republican secretaries of state had senior staffers who used private email addresses, "I have absolutely no concerns about it whatsoever.

5. Debating the death penalty It was a genuine distinction. Clinton outlined her support for the death penalty, arguing that it should be allowed in extremely rare circumstances but only if a state meets "the highest standards of evidentiary proof." She cited the Oklahoma City bombing as an example of a crime heinous enough to warrant the death penalty.

Sanders argued that the death penalty had often been applied to innocent people, and despite "barbaric acts out there" he doesn't believe in the death penalty. "In a world of so much violence, I just don’t believe that government itself should be part of the killing," He said. "So when somebody commits any of these terrible crimes that we’ve seen, you lock 'em up and you toss away the key." 
[Source]

TPP Threatens Our Freedom

Economic theory holds that removing trade barriers among nations should increase global wealth. But the proposed 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership that Congress must soon give a straight up-or-down vote threatens our liberties as Americans and is likely to add almost nothing to U.S. economic growth.

There are two chief reasons to reject the TPP. First, the partnership does little for the U.S. on tariffs. In fact, the TPP was only minimally about U.S. tariffs on imports, which overall are insignificant at 1.5 percent, amounting to only a fraction of a penny of each dollar of federal tax revenue. However, the same is not true for exports: Some U.S.-made goods are subject to tariffs of up to 70 percent. Tariffs on U.S. goods imposed by the 11 other countries fall to zero, encouraging more exports of machinery, automotive parts and other manufactured products. But these issues could be resolved in bilateral negotiations without expanding corporate powers.

Second, the agreement would allow foreign corporations and governments to challenge federal, state and local laws in every other partnership country. The arbitration panels will likely to be composed of trade lawyers agreed to by each side. Despite some precedents in existing treaties, this raises fundamental questions of sovereignty, especially since corporate agent­s, not judges in courts of law, would make decisions binding on the body politic. That no case brought against the United States under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), for example, has resulted in damages should not blind us to the fact that huge damages could be awarded under the TPP. [Source]


Reps. Hunter & Zinke introduce legislation requiring women to register for draft 

Washington, DC--Today, U.S. Representative Duncan Hunter, a Marine Corps veteran of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, introduced legislation to require that women register for the selective service. The legislation, titled the Draft America’s Daughters Act, requires registration for women no later than 90 days after the enactment of the measure or 90 days after the Secretary of Defense opens all combat specialties. Hunter is joined by U.S. Representative Ryan Zinke in introducing the bill, which comes on the heels of recent statements by the leaders of the Marine Corps and the Army that women should register for the draft.

It’s wrong and irresponsible to make wholesale changes to the way America fights its wars without the American people having a say on whether their daughters and sisters will be on the front lines of combat,” said Hunter. “If this Administration wants to send 18-20 year old women into combat, to serve and fight on the front lines, then the American people deserve to have this discussion through their elected representatives. The Administration made its decision to open all combat specialties without regard for the research and perspective of the Marine Corps and special operations community, or without consideration or care for whether the draft would have to be opened to both men and women. This discussion should have occurred before decision making of any type, but the fact that it didn’t now compels Congress to take a honest and thorough look at the issue. Source

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