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A Nation Betrayed

Newsletter | April 11, 2024

Damaged American Flag

The U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan was a complete disaster. Thousands of U.S. allies were left behind to fend for themselves under the terrorist regime of the Taliban. The proxy war in Ukraine is another disaster. There is no clear-cut U.S. diplomatic strategy, and billions of U.S. taxpayers’ dollars are sent to a regime with no accountability to American citizens. Time and time again, the Biden Administration has betrayed American citizens and our allies. And it’s happening again.

This week, President Donald Trump called it like it is concerning the Biden administration’s response to America’s ally, Israel, and its fight to protect its homeland and citizens. “Biden has totally lost control of the Israel situation. He’s totally abandoned Israel.”

Biden’s predecessor is referring to the fact that the current commander-in-chief has urged the Jerusalem government to implement a unilateral ceasefire in its war against Hamas. In other words, Israel should stop its war without getting back any of the hundreds of hostages the Palestinian terror group is still holding in Gaza after its massacre of 1200 people more than six months ago. Since Hamas is also holding Americans hostage, that means the White House is betraying not only a crucial ally but also his oath to protect and defend U.S. citizens.

The press has all but buried the fact that Hamas targeted Americans, too, when it overran the Israeli border on October 7. The terrorist group slaughtered dozens of U.S. citizens among the thousands of others it tortured, murdered, and mutilated. Since then, there have been few signs that the White House has exerted any efforts to free those that Hamas still holds.

For starters, the administration could pressure Hamas’ diplomatic intermediary, Qatar. If the tiny Gulf emirate won’t compel Hamas to release its captives, the White House might choose to move the largest U.S. airfield in the Middle East out of Qatar and leave the royal family exposed to its own adversaries. The Biden team could also come down hard on Hamas’ sponsor, Iran. Instead, the White House continues to coddle Tehran even as the terror masters target U.S. troops across the region and their proxies in Yemen fire missiles at Red Sea shipping. Rather than weaken U.S. enemies, Biden and his aides have spent U.S. power and prestige in their tireless efforts to topple Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at wartime.

Biden officials have let on that they intend to make the “temporary” ceasefire they’re demanding permanent. That would hand Israel a consequential loss and empower the same terrorist organizations that threaten U.S. peace and prosperity in the Middle East and even here at home.

In Dearborn, Michigan last week, a large pro-Hamas, pro-Hezbollah, and pro-Iran crowd gathered to celebrate their terrorist heroes and chant “Death to America.” That’s the voting block Biden seeks to placate by bringing Israel to its knees — an anti-American cohort that U.S. administrations dating back decades welcomed into the country. So, while this White House has opened its borders to all comers no matter the dangers they bring, the fact is that there is already a terror threat in place here at home that holds a dagger to our backs.

The current U.S. government wants to rescue Hamas, but Americans have a stake in the total defeat of a terror group that means our country, as well as our allies, harm. In abandoning Israel in its war on terror, Biden has abandoned reason and made America vulnerable to the same furies that drove the October 7 massacre. Time to stand up and make our voices heard — our security at home depends on standing up for an ally abroad.

Please participate in our Reader’s Survey. Your insights and thoughts are important as we learn what is on the minds and in the hearts of our fellow Americans. We read them all and share some of them Mondays at 9 a.m. during America’s Future live broadcasts with our Executive Director Mary O’Neill on America’s Mondays With Mary. Thank You!

America Patriots - Roger Kimball

Roger Kimball is Editor and Publisher of The New Criterion and President and Publisher of Encounter Books. He writes regular columns for The Epoch Times and The Spectator, U.S. edition. He’s the author of several books, including The Long March: How the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s Changed America and Tenured Radicals: How Politics Has Corrupted Our Higher Education.

We spoke with Roger recently to get his insight on books and literature, our founding fathers, the American present, and the future of our great nation.

Were art and literature important to the Founding Fathers?

Yes, but in a special sense.  Primarily, they were interested in the art of forming nations, so their reading was heavily tilted toward the classics. The image of Hamilton reading Plutarch as he shivered at Valley Forge is paradigmatic.  Jefferson of course was interested in architecture but I think John Adams’s observation speaks most pertinently to the question: “I must study politics and war,” he said, “that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history, naval architecture, navigation, commerce and agriculture in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain.”

What is the role of a conservative writer in today’s media?

Basically, the same role that Socrates played in Athens or Kierkegaard play in Copenhagen.  Socrates was a “gadfly” painfully stinging people out of their complacency, ignorance, and hypocrisy.  Kierkegaard slyly exposed the ways in which supposed Christians actually betrayed Christianity by only pretending to be what they were not.  One task for the conservative writer today is to expose the manifold ways the people who shout most loudly about saving “our democracy” really act to undermine it.

What books should Americans read to understand our current circumstances?

Here are four. The Camp of the Saints, a novel by the French writer Jean Raspail, which imagines a future in which Western civilization is overrun and destroyed by untrammeled waves of migration from the third world.  Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell’s great dystopian novel about how totalitarianism destroys society partly by brutality, partly by denying reality (2+2=5). The fact that many of the Left take the book as a how-to manual should give us pause.  Brave New World, Aldous Huxley’s dystopian novel about a future society in which the populace in tranquilized into submission by a systematic erasing of the past, genetic engineering, and enforced promiscuity.  Finally, Arthur Milikh’s Up from Conservatism: Revitalizing the Right After a Generation of Decay.  This collection of essays by diverse hands looks deeply into the state of American society and offers a host of remedial strategies for recovery.  (Full disclosure:  not only did I publish the book but also I have an essay in it.)

What new Encounter books should we read to prepare for the 2024 election?

Let me mention two just-published books: Second Class: How The Elites Betrayed America’s Working Men and Women by Batya Ungar-Sargon and Arabella: The Dark Money Network of Leftist Billionaires Transforming America by Scott Walter.  The subtitle of both underscores the important topics they treat.

What is your prayer for America?

That we bear in mind these wise words from Jefferson’s first inaugural address: “Every difference of opinion is not a difference of principle. We have called by different names brethren of the same principle. We are all republicans; we are all federalists. If there be any among us who would wish to dissolve this Union, or to change its republican form, let them stand undisturbed as monuments of the safety with which error of opinion may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it.” 

Editor’s Note: To read other Speaking With American Patriots interviews, please click here.

Standing Idly By Is Not An Option

Less than seven months from today, millions of Americans will honor our Constitutional Republic and fulfill the most essential duty by exercising their right to vote.  By all accounts, the outcome of this election will shape and direct the future of this great nation.

Every eligible citizen must register to vote and vote come November 5th. Standing idly by is not an option this time around. Neither is waiting to get involved in your community or state’s election process. It is our duty to participate in elections to ensure the integrity of the process and that the results truly reflect the will of We The People.  As U.S. Supreme Court Justice, Hon. Hugo Black stated in a 1964 voting rights case, 

No right is more precious in a free country than that of having a voice in the election of those who make the laws under which, as good citizens, we must live. Other rights, even the most basic, are illusory if the right to vote is undermined.

In doing your research on candidates and platform issues before casting your vote, investigate your state’s election rules concerning ballot harvesting, mail-in ballots, electioneering, and others. Take notice of untrustworthy practices happening in your voting districts and speak up.

As a reminder, ballot harvesting occurs when organizations, groups, or individuals make coordinated efforts to collect absentee voters’ ballots and drop them off at polling locations and/or in ballot collection boxes.  Electioneering, generally, is an activity or behavior that attempts to intimidate someone to vote for a certain candidate or a certain political party during elections.  Each state has its own electioneering laws that define what type of election activity is acceptable in that particular state.  America’s Future Election Information Resource Library is a good place to start and increase your knowledge.

Your vote to choose the leaders of this nation is up to you. Understanding your state’s election laws and rules helps fulfill your civic duty to America, your family, neighbors, and friends. America’s Future urges you to stay informed and get involved.

A Child Needs Your Help Today
A Child with a bruise

Be part of the expanding network of Americans across the country who are in the fight and armed with the skills and tools to help end child exploitation and trafficking in their communities. Hundreds of individuals, families, and professionals in various industries have participated in America’s Future Get In The Fight campaigns in Florida, Michigan, Illinois, and Texas. Washington State is next with a Friday night summit on April 26th, followed by a full day of training programs on Saturday, April 26th. All events take place at On Fire Ministries in Spokane.

The Summit begins at 6:00 p.m., featuring the movie Into The Light by filmmaker Mike Smith, who also directed the highly acclaimed film Out Of Shadows, and a panel discussion moderated by award-winning investigative journalist Lara Logan. Panelists include Buddy Jericho, All Things Possible Board Member and Founder and CEO of Indago Technologies; Jaeson Jones, CEO, Omni Intelligence; Tara Lee Rodas, HHS Whistleblower, Baz Bazzel, founder and president of the Association for the Recovery of Children (ARC), and Tina Baz, ARC Human Trafficking Program Director. General Mike Flynn, Chair of America’s Future Board, will be on hand to deliver remarks. Lara Logan and Mike Smith are members of America’s Future Board of Directors.

The training programs on Saturday, April 27th, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., offer a diverse range of courses tailored to various professions and roles. These include seminars for healthcare professionals, parents and caring adults, first responders, real estate professionals, and overcomers. The curriculum also covers important topics such as “Navigating the Emerging Threat of Sextortion,” “Pitfalls of Pornography,” and “Artificial Intelligence and Media Manipulation,” ensuring that every participant gains relevant and valuable knowledge.

To register for the Get In The Fight Washington State campaign, click here. The next state campaign is scheduled for Ohio on June 14th and 15th. The campaigns are part of America’s Future Project Defend & Protect Our Children initiative. Individuals or organizations interested in coordinating a Get In The Fight campaign in their states are invited to email Lisa MacDonald, America’s Future Director of Strategic Planning, at [email protected]Click here to join the Project Defend & Protect Our Children network and receive news and information about upcoming events and other important educational material.

Keeping You Informed
Updates On America’s Future Amicus Briefs

With today’s newsletter, America’s Future extends its “Amicus Reporting” series into a fifth week.  This series chronicles for our readers updates on court cases that America’s Future has participated in as nonparty participants, or “Amicus Curiae,” Latin for “friend of the court, including recent Supreme Court (SCOTUS) litigation focused on issues involving longstanding canons of our Constitution – separation of powers, states’ rights, and individual liberties.

Since December 2021, our organization has filed 50 Amicus briefs in jurisdictions nationwide, at both trial and appellate levels. In the past four newsletters, we chronicled the travels of 24 of those cases. Our reporting will continue over the next several newsletters. To access all the status updates posted thus far, please click here.

Case: Gonzalez v Google, SCOTUS Dkt No. 21-1333
Amicus Brief
Filing Date(s): December 7, 2022
Primary Issue(s): “Whether section 230(c)(l) immunize interactive computer services when they make targeted recommendations of information provided by another information content provider, or only limit the liability of interactive computer services when they engage in traditional editorial functions (such as deciding whether to display or withdraw) with regard to such information?”
Outcome: Contrary to the urging of America’s Future, the SCOTUS issued its ruling on May 18, 2023 vacating the judgment of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and remanding the case thereto.

Case: Tennessee v Department of Education, 6th Cir. Dkt No. 22-5807
Court: United States Court of Appeals for2023, Sixth Circuit 
Amicus Brief
Filing Date(s): January 31, 2023
Primary Issue(s): Whether the lower court appropriately issued a preliminary injunction enjoining the Department of Education (DOE) from implementing a Final Agency Interpretation document published in the Federal Register on June 22, 2021, which indicated an intent, on the part of the administration and its agencies, to wildly misinterpret and misapply the 2020 SCOTUS decision in Bostock v Clayton County, 140 S. Ct. 1731 (2020) in an effort to materially modify Title IX’s prohibition on sex discrimination.
Outcome: Pending (oral argument took place on April 26, 2023, before a 3-judge 6th Circuit panel and additional party filings are docketed; the most recent filing was docketed on January 29, 2024).

Case: Lake v Hobbs, Arizona Supreme Court Dkt. No. CV-23-0046-PR
Court: U.S. Supreme Court 
Amicus Brief
Filing Date(s): March 16, 2023
Primary Issues: Whether the First Amendment allow a government regulator to threaten regulated entities with adverse regulatory actions if they do business with a controversial speaker, as a consequence of (a) the government’s own hostility to the speaker’s viewpoint or (b) a perceived “general backlash” against the speaker’s advocacy? Also, does such coercion violate a clearly established First Amendment right?
Outcome: Contrary to the urging of America’s Future, the Arizona Supreme Court ruled against Ms. Lake.  Following that ruling, Ms. Lake appealed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.  On October 16, 2023, the Ninth Circuit, in a per curiam opinion, affirmed the district court’s dismissal based on the legal doctrine of “standing.” On March 14, 2024, Ms. Lake filed a petition for a writ of certiorari along with a motion to expedite the SCOTUS consideration of her petition.  The SCOTUS will consider of Ms. Lake’s motion (and perhaps her petition) on April 19, 2024, during their (internal) Conference.

Case: Soule v Connecticut Association of Schools, 2nd Cir. Dkt. No. 21-1365
Court: United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
Amicus Brief
Filing Date(s): March 30, 2023
Primary Issue: At issue is a 2013 “Transgender Participation” policy that the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC) adopted requiring member high schools to allow participation in sex-specific sports based on a student’s professed gender regardless of the student’s actual biological sex. 
Outcome: Consistent with the urging of America’s Future, the Second Circuit, sitting en banc, vacated the lower court’s judgment and remanded the case back to the lower court where it is currently pending in the pleading stage.  If the case survives dismissal motions, the next phase in this case will be the “discovery” phase.

Case: Tingley v Ferguson, SCOTUS Dkt. No. 22-942
Court: U.S. Supreme Court 
Amicus  Brief
Filing Date(s): April 27, 2023
Primary Issue(s): (1)  Whether a law that censors conversations between counselors and clients as “unprofessional conduct” violates the Free Speech Clause; and (2) Whether a law that primarily burdens religious speech is neutral and generally applicable, and if so, whether the Court should overrule Employment Division v. Smith, 494 U.S. 872 (1990).
Outcome: Contrary to the urging of America’s Future, on December 11, 2023, the SCOTUS denied Mr. Tingley’s petition, issuing the following order with two of three dissenting Justices issuing separate dissenting opinions): “Petition DENIED. Justice Kavanaugh would grant the petition for a writ of certiorari. Justice Thomas, dissenting from the denial of certiorari. (Detached Opinion) Justice Alito, dissenting from the denial of certiorari. (Detached Opinion)

Editor’s Note: To read all the Amicus briefs’ status updates posted thus far, please click here.

Tools Of Tyrants
Occupational Licensure

This is the seventeenth entry in our In Focus series identifying and exposing the tools that modern-day tyrants are using to thwart the will of We The People for power and control. To access previous articles, please click here.

Whenever government is entrusted with a power to do good, we should expect that it will be abused to do ill.  Government is particularly dangerous when it seeks to protect Americans from making bad decisions.  To be sure, it usually is the federal government that abuses its powers, but one governmental power entrusted to the states is being increasingly abused.  That power is occupational licensure — the authority of government to regulate who may practice a given profession or vocation.  If the government can decide who may lawfully work in a given field, it arbitrarily can prohibit Americans from making a living in their field of expertise and choice — an awesome power indeed.

Most American’s first reaction to any criticism of occupational licensure is to say: “I don’t want my neighbor to remove my appendix.” Answer: “then don’t hire your neighbor to do surgery.”

Most American’s second reaction is: “Without licensing, how will I know the person I am dealing with is competent?”  Answer: “with licensing, you still don’t know if the person you are hiring is competent.”  Caveat Emptor (Buyer Beware).

If the government did not license occupations, then private certification groups would spring up, and they would compete with each other to ensure the persons they certify were not just minimally qualified, but actually competent.  Do you remember the Betty Crocker Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval?  Products would be tested, and only if they passed the tests, Good Housekeeping would allow the product to be advertised with their Seal of Approval and provide a limited warranty.  (The program still exists.)  Even with occupational licensure, similar private certification services exist in many fields, providing consumers more information on which to make decisions.  And now consumer reviews are readily available on line, such as Yelp ratings.

The basic rationale for occupational licensure laws was explained by the U.S. Supreme Court when it upheld a statute requiring medical practitioners be licensed:

The power of the State to provide for the general welfare of its people authorizes it to prescribe all such regulations as, in its judgment, will secure or tend to secure them against the consequences of ignorance and incapacity as well as of deception and fraud.  [Dent v. West Virginia, 129 U.S. 114, 122 (1889) (emphasis added).]  

Today’s licensing does prevent deception and fraud.  And, to be sure, some Americans would make mistakes in who they hire — but that happens today.  As it has been said:

A nation that protects its citizens from making foolish mistakes creates a nation of fools. 

Licensing might sound good, if the government is requiring reasonable minimum educational standards and then applying them fairly, but if the system ever worked that way, it does not now.

First, these laws can be abused when they are applied to restrict the supply of practitioners.  The professions that impose the highest barriers to entry seem to enjoy the highest salaries for the select few who can enter the field.  “The medical and legal professions account for around a quarter of the top 1% of earners, whose incomes have grown faster in America than in other rich countries in recent decades.

Second, licensure is not limited to what might be considered to be the highly skilled professions, such as doctors, attorneys, architects, and accountants.  Various states now license dance instructors, florists, and cat groomers.  The Commonwealth of Virginia licenses “hair braiders” ostensibly for health reasons, but really to protect those already in the business from competition.  Does the public interest really require 170 hours of hair braiding training in a Virginia-licensed school, six months of braider work experience, and passing a test in the “theory” of hair braiding? 

[In the 1950s], the American economy rested on manufactured goods, and only 4-5 percent of the workforce was subject to a licensing requirement.  But [s]ince 1950, the percentage of the domestic workforce in positions subject to a licensing requirement has multiplied 500 percent and now stands at approximately 25 percent of the economy.

In practice, “[t]he misuse and overuse of occupational licensing dampens job creation, innovation, productivity, and consumer choice.” Rather than protecting consumers, “excessive occupational licensure creates large costs that are not publicly appreciated, such as higher consumer prices, restricted employment, and dampened innovation.”  Surprisingly to some, “this research also suggests that the benefits that are promised by defenders of extensive occupational licensing — such as improvements in quality of services, health, and safety — are largely absent.”

But in recent years, government has begun to use licensing laws in a way that is far more dangerous to our freedoms than limiting competition.  Occupational licensure laws are used to control Americans, to force them to adopt to the government’s narrative, and follow government orders, upon penalty of losing their license.

When thoughtful physicians developed better ways to treat COVID-19 or questioned the mRNA vaccines Dr. Fauci was pushing, they had complaints filed against them with licensing authorities.  Doctors who prescribed ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine that worked were disciplined.  On the other hand, physicians who repeated the government’s false claim that these vaccines were “safe and effective” were rewarded with bonuses (i.e., bribed).

With the COVID issue behind us at the moment, the government is seeking to shut down dissent from the legal community.

Leftist groups, some funded by shadowy “dark money” interests, have systematically targeted conservative lawyers expressly representing conservative politicians and advancing their legal theories in court.  The Left has decided to use these laws to drive their ideological competitors, literally, out of business.

To this end, “[t]he 65 Project was created in 2022 to target lawyers who worked on post-election lawsuits, seeking to disbar 111 lawyers across 26 states.”  The lawyers’ “crime” — “work[ing] on former President Donald Trump’s post-election lawsuits.”  The 65 Project has made clear its goal to make conservative lawyers “toxic in their communities.”

Now the California Bar has taken the stunning step of moving to disbar John Eastman, the widely respected former dean of Chapman University’s law school. Eastman is considered by many to be the nation’s most prominent conservative legal scholar-practitioner.  Eastman’s crime?  Eastman advised Trump and then-Vice President Pence that under the Constitution, state legislatures could remedy election irregularities by delaying the January 6 electoral college certification until state legislatures could determine if their state’s vote was contaminated by fraud.

For offering constitutional advice, the California bar decided to “disbar him when they disagree with him and decide that a former president does not deserve legal counsel.”  Eastman’s children, Benjamin Eastman and Christina Wheatland, wrote an article for The Blaze warning conservative lawyers that the more scalps the 65 Project and left-wing bars take, the more they will come after.  “The integrity of your profession is hanging by a thread.  Implore your state bars to keep political interests out of their work,” they wrote.

Lawyers are taught to defend and zealously advocate for one’s client, no matter how unpopular or even disreputable that client may be. But apparently ethical duties do not apply if your client is a certain former President.

Eastman’s cause has attracted support even from some establishment sources.  Newsweek’s Josh Hammer writes that the abuse of occupational licensure laws to drive conservative attorneys from the profession amounts to “the subordination of the rule of law to the Jacobins’ own friend/enemy-level politics, and the cowing into submission of those lawyers who would so much as consider representing a high-profile Republican client or working in a Republican Department of Justice.”

The abuse of occupational licensure laws is now open for all to see.  It will take time to turn back these licensing laws, but we can start by standing with lawyers like John Eastman against attacks based on his political and legal beliefs. 

Editor’s Note: To read the articles in this series, please click here.

Reminders and Updates

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