• Pragerisms

    For a more comprehensive list of Pragerisms visit
    Dennis Prager Wisdom.

    • "The left is far more interested in gaining power than in creating wealth."
    • "Without wisdom, goodness is worthless."
    • "I prefer clarity to agreement."
    • "First tell the truth, then state your opinion."
    • "Being on the Left means never having to say you're sorry."
    • "If you don't fight evil, you fight gobal warming."
    • "There are things that are so dumb, you have to learn them."
  • Liberalism’s Seven Deadly Sins

    • Sexism
    • Intolerance
    • Xenophobia
    • Racism
    • Islamophobia
    • Bigotry
    • Homophobia

    A liberal need only accuse you of one of the above in order to end all discussion and excuse himself from further elucidation of his position.

  • Glenn’s Reading List for Die-Hard Pragerites

    • Bolton, John - Surrender is not an Option
    • Bruce, Tammy - The Thought Police; The New American Revolution; The Death of Right and Wrong
    • Charen, Mona - DoGooders:How Liberals Hurt Those They Claim to Help
    • Coulter, Ann - If Democrats Had Any Brains, They'd Be Republicans; Slander
    • Dalrymple, Theodore - In Praise of Prejudice; Our Culture, What's Left of It
    • Doyle, William - Inside the Oval Office
    • Elder, Larry - Stupid Black Men: How to Play the Race Card--and Lose
    • Frankl, Victor - Man's Search for Meaning
    • Flynn, Daniel - Intellectual Morons
    • Fund, John - Stealing Elections
    • Friedman, George - America's Secret War
    • Goldberg, Bernard - Bias; Arrogance
    • Goldberg, Jonah - Liberal Fascism
    • Herson, James - Tales from the Left Coast
    • Horowitz, David - Left Illusions; The Professors
    • Klein, Edward - The Truth about Hillary
    • Mnookin, Seth - Hard News: Twenty-one Brutal Months at The New York Times and How They Changed the American Media
    • Morris, Dick - Because He Could; Rewriting History
    • O'Beirne, Kate - Women Who Make the World Worse
    • Olson, Barbara - The Final Days: The Last, Desperate Abuses of Power by the Clinton White House
    • O'Neill, John - Unfit For Command
    • Piereson, James - Camelot and the Cultural Revolution: How the Assassination of John F. Kennedy Shattered American Liberalism
    • Prager, Dennis - Think A Second Time
    • Sharansky, Natan - The Case for Democracy
    • Stein, Ben - Can America Survive? The Rage of the Left, the Truth, and What to Do About It
    • Steyn, Mark - America Alone
    • Stephanopolous, George - All Too Human
    • Thomas, Clarence - My Grandfather's Son
    • Timmerman, Kenneth - Shadow Warriors
    • Williams, Juan - Enough: The Phony Leaders, Dead-End Movements, and Culture of Failure That Are Undermining Black America--and What We Can Do About It
    • Wright, Lawrence - The Looming Tower

“Who knows how many of those dollars were obtained by fraud?”



I’m so old, I can remember when one of the chief differences between the parties was that Republicans wanted less government spending and Democrats more, but both were opposed to fraud and at least claimed to want efficiency in government.

I think it has been quite a while since the Democrats have really minded being defrauded. In their eyes, spending is an end in itself. Whether the money goes to people who qualify for it under a myriad of government programs, or to people who only pretend to qualify, is not very important. This attitude reached a climax of sorts with the government’s response to covid.

The feds printed (borrowed from the Fed) trillions of dollars and pumped them into the economy in a variety of ways, including simply depositing them in people’s checking accounts. Who knows how many of those dollars were obtained by fraud? Who cares? Pretty much everyone seemed to be in on the scam.

In the aftermath of that fiasco, here and there, frauds have been identified and in some instances prosecuted. In Minnesota, the Feeding Our Future free-food scandal accounted for more than $250 million obtained under false pretenses. Similar scandals have erupted across the country. I can only surmise that fraud was so easy because the government didn’t really care.

case in point comes from Florida, where a Colombia native stole hundreds of thousands from the PPP program:

A glamorous Miami real estate broker is facing federal fraud raps after authorities said she used COVID-19 relief funds on a new Bentley, cosmetic procedures and a luxury apartment.

Daniela Rendon, 31, received $381,000 through the Small Business Administration and Paycheck Protection Program, according to the US Attorney for the Southern District of Florida.

But instead of using the government cash to keep legitimate employees afloat amid the pandemic, Rendon allegedly dispersed the fake payroll funds to friends and family for personal gain.

This was ridiculously easy to do:

As part of the scheme, Rendon allegedly falsified documents related to her real estate business in order to qualify for the PPP money — including her annual revenue, payroll, costs of products, IRS tax info and number of employees. She submitted the fabricated reports to lenders in New Jersey and Idaho, the Miami Herald reported.

Rendon, who calls herself an “Ultra Luxury” real estate agent on LinkedIn, then intersected the loan payments and routed them to herself and those in her inner circle, federal prosecutors allege.

Ms. Rendon in her taxpayer-provided Bentley:

I doubt that anywhere near one percent of those who defrauded the various government covid programs have been, or will be, caught. We are living in a poisonous environment in which it seems that many people, perhaps most, are on the take. Others are getting government money, why shouldn’t I? is a question that many are asking. When corruption becomes the norm, why not join in?

I think liberals are OK with this. In fact, I think they like it. If nipping off government funds, rather than engaging in productive activity in the private sector, is the easiest way to prosperity, their control over our society only grows. So, sure: go ahead and defraud us. Corruption, if you are a liberal, is your friend.

 “Your generosity and the love you have for veterans and their families are incredibly touching.”  

February 8, 2023

A Small Town Supports Wounded Warriors

By Colonel Deborah Hanagan at American Thinker:

Everyone’s probably heard of the Wounded Warrior Project, but there are other veteran support efforts that deserve similar recognition and acknowledgement, even if they are quite small.  Operation Black Hills Cabin in Custer, South Dakota is one of them.

One family said, “We would like to thank Operation Black Hills Cabin, the donors and the people of Custer.  Your generosity and the love you have for veterans and their families are incredibly touching.”  Another family said, “This was a life changing experience… it was exactly the family respite we needed to disconnect and reconnect.”  A third said, “My family was blown away by how this community comes together to support and provide us and every veteran and family this opportunity.”  These families are referring to the week they had just spent in the Black Hills of South Dakota thanks to Operation Black Hills Cabin (OBHC).

It is a longstanding value within the U.S. Armed Forces that the military takes care of its own.  But sometimes veterans and their families need care and support long after they leave active duty.  While the Veterans Administration has provided critical medical care to veterans who are combat wounded as a consequence of deployment on military operations in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, a multitude of non-profit organizations have sprung up to aid veterans over the long term.  

The brainchild of a retired Air Force couple in 2011, the concept was quickly embraced by both the people of Custer and the surrounding communities because it was a tangible way for the community to say thank you to the veterans and their families for their service and sacrifice. Operation Black Hills Cabin is a 501(c)3 non-profit that operates entirely from donations and volunteers — every single contribution, whether monetary or material, goes to either the cabin or the supported families.  The mission of the Cabin is to provide a therapeutic respite to veterans and their families.  It provides an opportunity, via a week-long retreat, for the disabled veterans to reacquaint themselves with their family in a quiet, peaceful and leisurely environment, far away from the stress and daily routine that has become their “new normal.”

The fully handicapped-accessible 1,200-square-foot cabin, with three bedrooms and two bathrooms, was donated by the South Dakota Housing Authority.  Built by state prison inmates, one of whom was so inspired by the OBHC mission he donated his weekly pay, it was escorted by the Patriot Guard Riders the entire 375-mile journey to Custer.  Volunteers built a “healing hike” on the one-acre property, which is leased from the City of Custer for $1 a year, that includes benches at scenic overlooks and inspirational quotes sandblasted into rocks along the path.

The families stay at the cabin for free, and while it has no television, internet, or telephone, it is fully furnished and has a fully stocked kitchen and laundry.  A welcoming committee meets each family and explains the wide variety of potential activities available to them.  Options include watching the abundant local wildlife, playing a variety of indoor and outdoor games, or exploring the Black Hills.  The local business community has enthusiastically supported OBHC and the families are given coupons for free meals and free admission to many popular Black Hills attractions, such as Mount Rushmore, the Crazy Horse Memorial, and the Custer State Park.  The cabin operates from Memorial Day to the end of September and can host up to 17 families a year.  Since its beginning in 2011, 139 families from 36 states have stayed at the cabin.

The biggest challenge OBHC currently faces is getting the word out about this unparalleled opportunity for qualified veterans.  To qualify, a veteran has to be a minimum of 30% combat injured from any post-September 11, 2001 military operation.  Warrior Transition Unit members are also eligible.  Qualified veterans can apply at any time. The application and further information about Operation Black Hills Cabin are available at the website.

Operation Black Hills Cabin and the Custer community exhibit the best attributes of American culture and traditions and they serve as a living example that small, local efforts matter.  Small-town America has something valuable to give to our wounded veterans and their families. Evidence of ‘mission accomplished’ by OBHC and the community has been provided by families every year.  One said, “OHBC is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.  I was very emotional the entire trip thinking about how such a small community can come together to honor each family.  I rarely see my husband smile or laugh anymore… but during this trip he actually was smiling for the majority of the trip.  That in itself is a memory that my children and I will have for many years to come.”  Another veteran echoed the sentiment in 2022, “Our family received a one-of-a-kind message of gratitude for our service to this country.  Never in our lives have we felt this kind of sincere thank you for our service to this country.”

Colonel Deborah Hanagan (U.S. Army, retired) is a proud volunteer for Operation Black Hills Cabin

Image: Operation Black Hills Cabin

“Some Americans, such as the family of Florida Sheriff’s Deputy Michael Hartwick, have experienced firsthand the disastrous consequences of Biden’s open-border policies.”

7 People Biden Didn’t Bother To Mention During His State Of The Union Address

BY: SHAWN FLEETWOOD at the Federalist:

FEBRUARY 07, 2023 Article sent by Mark Waldeland:

President Joe Biden giving his 2023 State of the Union address

While Biden’s speech contained shoutouts to notable State of the Union attendees, it predictably left out several individuals whose circumstances put the administration’s governance to shame.

Author Shawn Fleetwood profile


Just when you think Joe Biden couldn’t spew more incoherent nonsense during highly publicized events, he finds a way to do it. During his Tuesday night State of the Union address, the Democrat president told lie after lie about his managing of the country’s affairs. As expected, many of these so-called “accomplishments” were either flat-out untrue or grossly exaggerated.

While Biden’s speech also contained several shoutouts to notable State of the Union attendees, such as Ukraine’s ambassador to the United States, it predictably left out several groups of individuals whose circumstances put the administration’s governance to shame. To make sure these figures get the recognition they deserve, here’s The Federalist’s list of the top seven individuals Biden should have — but didn’t — mention during his Tuesday night diatribe.

1. Victims of Illegal Immigration

Some Americans, such as the family of Florida Sheriff’s Deputy Michael Hartwick, have experienced firsthand the disastrous consequences of Biden’s open-border policies. Last year, Hartwick was killed during a hit-and-run, for which Juan Ariel Molina-Salles — a 32-year-old illegal immigrant who unlawfully crossed the U.S. southern border on two separate occasions, starting in October 2021 — was charged.

Combined with the unprecedented number of border apprehensions and the massive influx of migrants negatively affecting border towns, specifically local health-care facilities, the open-border policies of the Biden administration are destroying American lives.

2. Parents and Children Harmed by Leftist Education Policies

Leftism’s permeation of America’s education system has crippled the well-being of children throughout the country. So it was no surprise when Biden failed to recognize some of its biggest victims Tuesday night.

In Virginia, for instance, the willingness of a high school to conceal a female student’s gender dysphoria from her mother ultimately led the young girl to run away into the hands of sex traffickers. Even after her rescue in Maryland, state authorities’ obsession with radical gender theory prompted them to withhold the girl’s release to her parents on the grounds that her family was abusive for not affirming her so-called gender identity.

3. Americans Suffering from Covid Mandates

Nearly three years after the Covid outbreak, everyday Americans are still grappling with the effects of politicians’ overreaching lockdown-style policies. In addition to the economic damage and learning loss among children, Covid jab mandates — particularly those illegally enacted by Biden himself — have forced Americans to choose between their livelihoods and overall health.

Factor in the increasingly common side effects experienced by those who received the experimental injections, and it becomes more obvious the effects of these policies will be felt for years to come.

4. Victims of the Botched Afghanistan Withdrawal

Over a year later and U.S. allies are still feeling the repercussions of Biden’s calamitous withdrawal from Afghanistan. Abdul Wasi Safi, an Afghan soldier who worked with the U.S. military during its time in Afghanistan, is among the withdrawal’s many victims.

Following the United States’ departure in August 2021, Safi fled to Brazil from Afghanistan for fear of “reprisals from the Taliban.” Last summer, he embarked on a journey to the U.S. southern border, where he was apprehended and claimed asylum in September. While initially facing a federal count for unlawful entry, Safi’s charges were dropped by a federal judge last month, allowing him to remain in the United States.

5. Women Forced to Live with Male Inmates

Democrats’ obsessive push for radical gender theory isn’t just harming children in school. In prisons throughout the country, female inmates are being forced to share living quarters with male prisoners purporting to be women.

In April, for instance, a female detainee at Rikers was raped by fellow prisoner Ramel Blount in the women’s section of the facility. Blount, who goes by the name Diamond Blount, was given “a seven-year prison sentence with an additional eight years of post-release supervision.”

For a president who loves to profess his support for women, Biden seemingly couldn’t care less about those grappling with leftist lunacy while behind bars.

6. Religious Americans Who Follow the True Meaning of Marriage

In no way, shape, or form was Congress’s passage of the wrongly named “Respect for Marriage Act” last year respectful of the institution of marriage nor religious Americans. With the help of 12 Senate Republicans, Biden’s signing of the bill allowed for leftists to declare legal war against faith-based individuals and organizations that uphold the true, biblical definition of marriage.

As a result, religious Americans such as Colorado cake artist Jack Phillips will be relentlessly harassed for continuing to practice their faith openly.

7. Babies Safe from Abortion

With the Supreme Court’s 2022 ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization having gutted the phony “constitutional right to an abortion” precedent established in Roe v. Wademultiple states across the country have enacted pro-life legislation protecting unborn lives. According to one analysis, an estimated 10,000 babies were saved from the scourge of abortion within just the first two months of the high court’s ruling.

While this should be cause for celebration, pro-abortion extremists such as Biden will continue to advocate for the murder of innocent children in the womb with the selfish and anti-science “My body, my choice” argument.

Shawn Fleetwood is a Staff Writer for The Federalist and a graduate of the University of Mary Washington. He also serves as a state content writer for Convention of States Action and his work has been featured in numerous outlets, including RealClearPolitics, RealClearHealth, and Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @ShawnFleetwood

…”he is in effect lyin’ for Biden. That by itself should be news. And he must be lyin’ because the truth hurts so bad”.

 FEBRUARY 8, 2023 BY SCOTT JOHNSON at Power Line:


The Free Beacon’s Chuck Ross reports that the Department of Defense won’t identify the senior Pentagon official who told the press on background this weekend that the Trump administration let Chinese spy balloons transit the United States at least three times. The senior defense official omitted the critical fact that these incidents went undetected by the defense and national security establishments.

Ross links to the Pentagon transcript of the call here and notes that reporters reporters from CNN, the Associated Press, the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, CBS, Fox News, and Reuters were those invited to participate on the briefing held by conference call.

What is the point? The identity of the senior defense official would let us determine the level at which the Pentagon is working the public relations issues raised by the Chinese spy balloon in the service of the Biden administration: “A Pentagon spokesperson denied the Washington Free Beacon’s request to identify the senior official, or say whether the individual is a political appointee or career employee.”

Whoever he is, he is in effect lyin’ for Biden. That by itself should be news. And he must be lyin’ because the truth hurts so bad.

“Hunter Biden has decided to get aggressive with his “stay out of jail” plan and go on the offensive”.

February 7, 2023

The Biden Family Problems are Converging

By John Green at American Thinker:

The Biden family (as in crime family) legal problems are beginning to converge in an interesting way.  It may be the formation of a perfect political storm.

Objective observers (which excludes the MSM) recognize that the Biden clan has had some shady financial dealings.  With recent events, the evidence is becoming undeniable.  As criminals often do, one of the co-conspirators may need to turn on the other to cover his tail.  In this case, Hunter Biden may be the one protecting himself at his partner’s expense — with Joe Biden being the partner left holding the bag.

I like those movies where a criminal mastermind pulls off an impossible heist and leaves no evidence behind.  A Hunter Biden caper doesn’t look anything like that.  He traveled the world selling influence and information (some of which may have been classified) provided by his father.  His primary clients appear to be Ukraine and China.  That would be the very Ukraine that President Asterisk made generous military gifts to, and the China that he refuses to hold accountable for anything.

Hunter then:

  • loaded his laptop with evidence of the Biden family influence business;
  • dropped it off at a repair shop;
  • signed a contract granting ownership to the shop, should he abandon the laptop;
  • went on a dope- and hooker-fueled binge; and
  • abandoned the laptop — probably forgetting where he left it and what it contained.

Now an unknown number of people have copies of the laptop hard drive.  Hunter Biden fulfills only half of the “criminal mastermind” moniker — and it’s not the “mastermind” half.

But for Hunter, it was no problem.  His dad has always had his six.  Pop could just ring up his Garland and Wray fixer department and have them fix it.  Problem solved — until now.

Now Joe’s got his own problems.  He got caught doing what he said was inexcusable — if Donald Trump did it.  That would be mishandling, and maybe even stealing, classified documents.  The revelation has shattered the illusion of his integrity.  Don’t laugh.  Some people actually believed that fairy tale.

Then, just when people were starting to forget about his Afghanistan surrender debacle, the Chinese seized air superiority over America using 19th-century technology — a balloon.  That also left the illusion of his competence shattered.

Now the Republican led House of Representatives is gearing up to investigate all things Biden.  This time, they actually appear serious.  Nobody saw that coming when Kevin McCarthy was elected speaker.

Now Joe’s looking around and not finding many friends.  The Republicans want to push him out of office because he’s dangerous to the country.  The Dems want to push him out of office because he’s dangerous to the party.  And the MSM are suddenly doing some actual reporting because they need to regain some credibility before the 2024 propaganda season warms up.

Joe has his own rock and hard place to deal with.  He doesn’t have the bandwidth to help his ne’er-do-well spawn.  The son who hasn’t done anything but create problems his entire life now has a big problem he has to solve by himself.  That problem would be how to stay out of jail when 330 million people are aware of what he did.

Hunter Biden has decided to get aggressive with his “stay out of jail” plan and go on the offensive.  He’s sent his legal team out to attack the admissibility of the evidence and the credibility of his critics.

His legal team is asserting that the dozen or so copies of Hunter’s laptop that are floating around were illegally obtained.  The evidence from the laptop is the “fruit of the poisoned tree,” if you will — unusable in court.  But that’s also a tacit admission that the laptop is genuine and belonged to Hunter Biden — before he donated it to the repair shop.  You can’t charge people with stealing your stuff if it’s not your stuff — it’s a legal thing.  And just like that, the Russian disinformation plausible deniability went poof.

That’s a big problem for President “10 percent for the big guy.”  The congressional investigators aren’t going to care much if some “Obama judge” rules the evidence inadmissible.  As the Trump impeachments demonstrated, congressional investigations aren’t bound by such legal technicalities.

Hunter’s “get aggressive” strategy also includes efforts to intimidate his accusers into silence.  He went straight to Herr Garland himself and asked for a favor.  He asked the DoJ to initiate federally funded persecution prosecution of anybody from the right who has accessed the data on the laptop.  He’s providing the names and asking Garland to use the Beria gambit to find the crime.  That’s how it’s done now, isn’t it?

Hunter is also asking the IRS to pull the tax-exempt status of organizations like Marco Polo.  It seems the foundation’s leader, Garrett Ziegler, dared to talk about the laptop on a radio program.  I was unaware that freedom of speech had a charitable foundation exclusion.  Lois Lerner was unavailable for comment.

Hunter is even threatening (but not filing) a defamation lawsuit against Fox News — as if Fox could possibly defame Hunter’s character more than Hunter has.  I’m sure Tucker Carlson would welcome such a lawsuit.  Just think of the opportunities afforded by discovery.  A deposition of Hunter Biden would probably be worth a year of prime-time monologues all by itself.

I have questions.  Do these threats by Hunter Biden telegraph strength or vulnerability?  Is a guy (like Tucker Carlson) who has over 3 million nightly viewers worried about Hunter’s threats?  Even criminal action from the DoJ would be a huge ratings bonanza with little legal risk — because of this little thing called the First Amendment to the Constitution.  Are Hunter’s attacks likely to quiet his critics or convince them that there’s a big story behind the bluster?

Hunter Biden’s scorched earth strategy may or may not help him legally.  It will definitely burn his father, Joe.

What Hunter is doing is putting his laptop back in the news, validating its authenticity, and juicing up interest in its contents.  Even if the laptop never makes an appearance in court, it’s going to be all over the news, renewing interest in Joe Biden’s sideline business — the business that made him a rich man while his only official income was a government salary.

All of this is happening just as people are looking for ways to help Joe out of the Oval Office. The timing of Hunter’s new strategy couldn’t be worse — for dear old dad.

John Green is a political refugee from Minnesota, now residing in Idaho.  He has written for American Thinker and American Free News Network.  He can be followed on Facebook or reached at greenjeg@gmail.com.

“The Chinese student population of about 2,000 in Duisberg isn’t doing Germany much good either…”

February 7, 2023

China is starting to P.O. its business-partner allies in Europe

By Monica Showalter at American Thinker:

The recent weather balloon incident over the United States isn’t likely to burnish China’s image among its business-partner allies in Europe, who are part of China’s vaunted “Belt and Road” initiative.

Over in Germany, according to a Nikkei/Financial Times piece, things are kind of getting bad:

“The Silk Road has not developed for us,” [Trucking school owner Suad]Durakovic told Nikkei Asia. “First it was Covid, then it was the Ukraine war, so the boom is no longer about Silk Road logistics.”

Duisburg, a city of half a million people, is located in Germany’s industrial heartland at the junction of the Rhine and Ruhr rivers. A downturn in the country’s steel and coal industries in the 1990s and early 2000s battered its economy.

But the city found a saviour in Chinese president Xi Jinping, who visited Duisburg in 2014 to officially make its inland port Europe’s main Belt and Road hub. While this fuelled anticipation of a new heyday, recent events suggest the prospects are dimming.

China was supposed to be the new thing, the wave of the future, the counterweight to the vast American influence in the region, but all the Germans are seeing from the Chicoms is a lot of me-first-ism, meaning, they don’t see business partners the same way Germans see business partners, which is a relationship of equals.

The trade deficit with China, for one, has gapped sharply higher since 2020. In that year. Germany exported $106 billion to China and China exported $112 billion to Germany. The FT chart shows that it’s now considerably higher, in the neighborhood of just under $200 billion in imports to Germany and only about $110 billion, based on a visual take from the chart. That’s a very sharp gap in a very short period of time.

The Chicoms aren’t creating jobs as expected, either. The FT describes how Chinese companies hanging out shingles are selling their products exclusively to Chinese customers back in China, and proudly stamping Made in Germany on them, which doesn’t do much for the German economy given that the Chicoms keep all the profits.

The Chinese student population of about 2,000 in Duisberg isn’t doing Germany much good either, because Chinese minders keep all Chinese students herded together in Duisberg, so there isn’t much of an exchange of ideas, which is what the Germans had hoped for — and which the Germans have seen from other Asian populations, according to the FT/Nikkei piece. The Chinese students don’t have the freedom of movement for the open exchange of ideas, so they have become a sort of student ghetto instead. The Germans didn’t bargain for that, either.

Lastly, the Germans are not happy about China’s propensity to play footsie with Russia as they scrimp and save to help Ukraine beat the monster off. That throws more fat on the fire in the Germany-China tensions faceoff.

What it shows here that for all of China’s high-and-mighty muscle-flexing, it’s starting to annoy its best-disposed allies who don’t like the me-first attitudes they are seeing from the Chicoms. It ought to not be a surprise as it serves as a reflection on the regime itself, which is no friend to anyone, despite its phony public relations narratives. They are an imperial power with ambitions of besting others and don’t see their partners as equals, only things to be exploited.

Well, now the Germans are catching on. Word gets around, something a lot of third world countries in hock to China’s “Belt and Road” could have told them first. Welcome aboard.  

Fascism Begins Its Leftist Dictate At University of Pennsylvania?

February 7, 2023

The University of Pennsylvania has become the poster child for ‘woke’

By Christopher Garbacz at American Thinker:

The University of Pennsylvania (UPENN), which Benjamin Franklin helped found in 1751, has become the poster child for what the radical left has done to America’s once outstanding universities. It’s been in the news repeatedly over the last few years, not because of the quality of its faculty and students but because it is at the forefront of woke economic, academic, diversity, and athletic policies. Examples of its woke degradation are that it took money from China for the Biden “think tank,” attempted to fire legal scholar and distinguished teacher Amy Wax for “wrongthink,” and slapped normal America (and women) in the face by allowing Will “Lia” Thomas, a moderately good male swimmer, to become dominant against women.

UPENN is a private institution with almost 40,000 employees (including almost 4,800 faculty members) and almost 22,500 students. For an undergraduate, tuition and living costs exceed $80,000. The school also has a $20 billion endowment.

When Obama’s second term ended, UPENN created the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement and made Joe Biden a professor. At the time, no one could have mistaken Biden for a scholar. So why did UPENN do this?

Image: University of Pennsylvania by Bryan Y.W. Shin.  CC BY-SA 3.0.

The best guess was that this was a way to leverage funding the Center. Whether Biden was personally useful was irrelevant. What mattered were his documents, which were valuable to other countries:

Foreign contributions to the University of Pennsylvania tripled since the Penn Biden Center’s soft opening in March 2017, rising from $31 million in 2016 to over $100 million in 2019. The largest foreign contributor was China, which significantly increased its gifts to the university after the Penn Biden Center opened. Studying China is in America’s interest, but funding should not be tied to China which could bias results of research.

The University of Pennsylvania took in around $61 million in gifts and contracts from China between 2017 and 2019, according to records from the Department of Education. This was a substantial uptick from the prior four years, when the university received $19 million from China.

UPENN denies that any Chinese funding went directly to the Biden Center. However, money is fungible, so the new Chinese money most likely replaced monies elsewhere in the budget that were then free to fund the Center, with the same result.

Biden’s ties to China and UPENN’s disinterest in access to the classified documents allowed this to happen. UPENN should be forced to disgorge the money it took from China. It won’t, though, because it’s heavily dependent on Biden’s partner.

UPENN hosts just slightly more than 2,000 Chinese national students. Those that continue to come are obligated to act as Chinese agents.

Problematically for academia, overall Chinese enrollment in US universities fell by 45% because of the pandemic. This won’t change soon. Beginning in 2019, China took the position that many students can do just as well in China, given improvements in Chinese universities.

Professor Amy Wax’s travails show that UPENN does not value academic freedom. Wax does top-level work as a teacher and researcher. In 2017, she and Larry Alexander published their now famous op-ed: Paying the price for breakdown of the country’s bourgeois culture.

In it, they argued that America would be better off if we went back to an emphasis on family, hard work, getting married, and a job and love of country. This was seen as disrespect for minorities who don’t follow this prescription (and struggle with poverty and crime), something Wax compounded when she stated a simple fact: Black students do not thrive at UPENN.

Since the article’s publication, UPENN has subjected Wax to what can only be described as persecution. Although every tenured, full professor at UPENN is guaranteed the right to free speech, that apparently doesn’t apply to Wax.

The basis for driving Wax from academia is the claim that she is a racist. In addition to the challenge to her article, she’s now being persecuted for saying that unlimited elite Asian immigration is harming America because these powerful immigrants bring un-American values with them (they “don’t believe in liberty”) and pour their support into the Democrat party. (There’s UPENN’s Chinese fealty again, even if it means censoring speech.)

UPENN, the university that Ben Franklin helped found, is irredeemably opposed to free speech that counters the Democrat/Leftist woke narrative about anything. Wax is fighting this as only a high-level lawyer can—challenging the university’s blatant violation of its own rules.

Last among its more recent woke outrages is UPENN’s decision to allow a mediocre male swimmer (Will “Lia” Thomas) to swim for the women’s team simply because Thomas (who is physically intact) says he’s a woman. In that role, Thomas has smashed swim records that biological women set. This is an outright affront to women’s sports.

John Lohn asked the right question:

Just how much of an advantage did Lia Thomas possess over biological females? The numbers paint a clear picture. The fact that the University of Pennsylvania swimmer soared from a mid-500s ranking (554th in the 200 freestyle; all divisions) in men’s competition to one of the top-ranked swimmers in women’s competition tells the story of the unfairness which unfolded at the NCAA level.

Pitifully, Thomas and the trans crowd are proud of his wins. There is no way to spin this except by some mentally deficient classification of women. But the UPENN administration has proved that it knows no more about the definition of “woman” than SCOTUS Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson. UPENN ignores the women who do not want Will Smith on their team or in their locker room, claiming they have mental issues.

President Trump ($1.3 million in UPENN donations) and all other alums should mount a public lobbying attack aimed at reform. If the administration does not listen, then the oversight board should be involved. If that doesn’t work, then donations should be reduced to zero until UPENN changes its woke ways. In fact, as the family of T.C. Williams did when the University of Richmond erased their ancestor, donors should demand refunds. After all, it’s apparent from UPENN’s China dealings that money is what universities best understand.

Christopher Garbacz is a former Professor of Economics. He was a visiting professor at National Taiwan University.