"One should not wave the flag so furiously before ones face that it becomes a blindfold!" -- Michael Rivero

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As darkness shadows the American dream, more and more families are grappling with the harsh reality of financial distress. In 2024, an unprecedented number of Americans consider themselves "broke," reflecting a widespread economic struggle. From the relentless surge in inflation to the crippling burden of debt, the signs of instability are everywhere. Now, optimism has vanished, giving way to a pervasive sense of despair that is forcing many households to make heartbreaking sacrifices just to stay afloat.
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As President Joe Biden continues to drop in the polls since his disastrous debate performance in June, Democrats are concerned that the assassination attempt on Donald Trump will seal the former president’s victory in the November election.

A longtime Democratic insider, discussing the iconic photo of Trump pumping his fist in the air with blood dripping down his face and the American flag waving behind him told NBC, “We’re so beyond f*cked.”

A veteran of Democratic congressional campaigns said of the iconic image, “The clear effect of this assassination attempt is that it officially thrust Donald Trump out of politics and into martyrdom. They’re framing this as an attack on MAGA and not on Trump — even more powerful. This is literally biblical stuff we’re talking about.”

The person added that Democrats will “never be able to compete with that level of enthusiasm among base voters. So yeah, we’re even more f*cked with Biden. ... And relying on Trump to be a galvanizing, unifying enemy won’t work as well.”

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According to the California Department of Insurance, the Allstate homeowners filing was received by the Department on April 14, 2023. The initial rate request was 39.6%. Consumer Watchdog petitioned to intervene in July 2023. In January of this year, Allstate amended their rate request to 34.1%. According to a reports, it would be the largest rate increase this year and would impact more than 350,000 policyholders.
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Tony Bendele, a social media creator and trained firefighter in Pennsylvania, claimed he resigned his position as a captain in the Sunbury Fire Department on Monday after he expressed disappointment when an attempted assassin failed to kill former President Donald Trump at the Saturday rally in Butler, Pennsylvania.

“Too bad it didn’t hit him square,” Bendele reportedly wrote in a now-deleted post to his Facebook page. A photographer, Bendele (pictured above) has more than 20,000 followers on the social media platform.

When his words were deleted, ostensibly for violating the Facebook Community Standards, a screenshot suggests Bendele then complained that “someone reported” his post.

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Obviously, I'm not a fan of gun control. We don't tend to get a lot of anti-gun writers here for some silly reason.

But the truth of the matter is that there are a lot of very loud anti-gun voices out there that reach different audiences than we do. They're consistently screeching about how we need to restrict firearms.

That's especially true in light of the assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump. The gun control rhetoric has started and it's not likely to end soon.

But Utah's Sen. Mike Lee figures we need something completely different:

U.S. Sen. Mike Lee, a Tea Party-turned MAGA Republican, used his personal account to call for less concentrated power in the federal government.

“This would happen a lot less if we didn’t make the federal government and the presidency so ridiculously powerful,” he wrote, sharing a video of the chaos that had unfolded at the rally.

“Let’s push power back to where it belongs”

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The always mysterious question when trying to figure out what is happening in this insane world and why it is happening is who are “they”? In the current chaotic atmosphere, “they” are in the process of throwing their senile child sniffing pedophile Trojan horse president overboard because his dementia ridden brain has been laid bare for all the world to see. It isn’t just the Democratic Party throwing him to the wolves.

When you witness the party, supposedly loyal politicians, the regime media, surveillance state spooks, Hollywood celebrities, and globalist billionaires all simultaneously turn on the person they installed in 2020 through a rigged election, you realize the voting public have no say in how this country is run. Whether you refer to “they” as the Deep State, invisible government, ruling elite, globalist oligarchs, or shadowy men in smoke filled backrooms, we are just bit players in this surreal horror movie.

It is no longer a conspiracy theory that we are ruled by unelected men using their wealth to pull the levers of society to benefit themselves and the apparatchiks who do their dirty work. At some level, this type of control has existed since the inception of our country. Andrew Jackson’s tirade in the 1830s revealed there were deceitful men operating in the shadows, with their greedy agendas prevailing over what was best for the people.

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NATO’s three-day summit in Washington DC achieved the objective for which it was designed, to create a public forum in which all 32 members of the Alliance could express their unanimous support for upcoming attacks on the Russian Federation. That was the real purpose of the confab. The managers of the event, sought a dramatic display of unity to justify future hostilities with Moscow and to reduce the possibility that any one person would be held responsible for starting World War 3.

The summit was followed by the release of a formal Declaration which strongly suggests that the decision to go war has already been made. As many people know, NATO has green-lighted a policy that allows the firing of missiles at targets inside Russian territory. This policy will also apply to the numerous NATO F-16s that will be deployed to Ukraine sometime in the near future. (F-16s can carry nuclear missiles) Despite overwhelming support for these policies among the members, we must not forget that these are blatant acts of aggression that are forbidden under international law. No amount of public relations hoopla can conceal the fact that NATO is on-track to commit the “supreme crime”.

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Just days after the attempted assassination of former President Donald Trump, theories are flying from all directions. Many who ridiculed the “conspiracy theories” of conservatives are now suggesting the whole event was a set-up to boost Trump in the polls ahead of the election. Others suggest it was the “deep state” or even foreign actors who organized it.

Former US Navy Seal and founder of Blackwater, Erik Prince, claims that “The fact that [the Secret Service] allowed a rifle armed shooter within 150 yds to a preplanned event is either malice or massive incompetence.” He went on to observe that, “unaccountable bloated bureaucracies continue to fail us as Americans,” adding that “unserious and unworthy people in positions of authority got us to this near disaster. Merit and execution must be the only deciding factors in hiring and leadership, not the social engineering priority of the day.”

Video has emerged showing that for at least two minutes law enforcement knew someone with a gun was on a roof aiming at the former President and no one communicated the need to pull Trump from the stage. You can clearly hear the crowd warning law enforcement that someone was on the roof. Yet he was unhindered until the first shots rang out.

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Leading Republican lawmakers are demanding answers from the Army after gate security at Fort Liberty, North Carolina, was given an anti-terrorism briefing that lumped mainstream anti-abortion groups in with extremist groups.

The slide presentation was botched in many ways, including also labeling non-violent, left-wing groups as terrorists. But Republicans are homing in on the anti-abortion slide to charge that the Army is targeting conservative political beliefs.

House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mike Rogers, R-Ala., personnel subcommittee Chairman Jim Banks, R-Ind., and other committee Republicans sent a letter to Army Secretary Christine Wormuth over the weekend calling for answers by July 25 on how the slideshow came to be.

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by Tyler Durden
Monday, Jul 15, 2024 - 07:30 PM

Authored by Amie Dahnke via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

A new study by the American Cancer Society reveals that four in 10 cancer cases and about one-half of all cancer deaths in adults age 30 and older in the United States are attributed to lifestyle choices, or modifiable risk factors.

These risk factors are considered things a person can typically control and include smoking, excess body weight, alcohol consumption, physical activity, diet, exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation, and certain carcinogenic infections, according to the study published in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians.

Claire's Observations:  Today, I will be presenting research to a church group, consisting of caregivers for people with dementia, and in that presentation (my 94 year old adoptive mom has dementia), I will be talking about how lifestyle changes can alter the "doom loop" to which the medical community has consigned dementia sufferers, and what can possibly be done to reverse it.

The results of this specific approach are breathtakingly positive, and very simple.  When basemark cognitive tests are done before and after this approach to potentially reverse dementia, the numbers are a testament to the reality that the people who have devised this strategy are at least are on  the right track.

This is NOT a "cure" for dementia, but a fully realized interdisciplinary approach which gets people better, without the concerns for "brain bleeds" which can result from the use of the only drugs approved in this country to treat dementia.

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As much as $800 billion of that debt is at a high risk of default, economists say. If the financing vehicles can’t meet their obligations, Beijing could either pay for bailouts, which might create a bigger problem by encouraging unsound borrowing. Or it could allow insolvent funding vehicles to go belly up, exposing Chinese banks to serious losses and potentially spurring a credit crunch that would further erode economic growth. Deficit spending provided one solution. Chinese cities discovered decades ago that they could take on debt through state-owned entities known as local government financing vehicles, or LGFVs, to fund sewers, streets and the like.
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More and more people are being forced to sell their homes due to the phantom cost of homeownership rising too high unexpectedly. These are usually things like homeowners insurance increases, property tax increases, special assessments, or unexpected repair cost. For a long time these costs were relatively stable, but over the past few years they have been skyrocketing.
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Saturday’s failed assassination attempt against Donald Trump not only shocked the world, but also added a tragic chapter to a 2024 presidential race that was already marred in turmoil and controversy. First there was Trump’s conviction in the hush money case, which makes him the first convicted felon to run for president as a major party candidate.

Then there was Biden’s debate debacle, which sent shockwaves through the Democratic Party, as large parts of the American public seem to have lost faith in the president’s ability to serve a second term.

And now this, another eruption of political violence, three and a half years after the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

The events of the past few years are just the culmination of a trend that started long before: the increasing polarization of the political landscape.Reinforced by social media echo chambers and politicians seemingly more bound to their own agenda than to the truth or the good of the country, the U.S. seems more divided than ever, making compromise – a key component of a working democracy – virtually impossible.

All this hasn’t gone unnoticed outside the United States, where the country, once a role model for democracy, is viewed in an increasingly negative light.

Claire's Observations:  To my Brother and Sister Christians who read this site, a word, please.  

No matter how you come down on this country's geopolitical divides, now is a time to work together as Christians, with love and compassion  and not  get "sucked in" by political "talking points", but rise above them.  

There are a couple of Biblical injunctions which might be instructive here; 

“Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves. Be ye therefore wise as serpents and harmless as doves" (Matthew 10-16).

"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will". (Romans 12-2)

Right now, it is love, logic, and spiritual and moral responsibility which must define us,  as Christians, during this very difficult time in American history.  

At 75, with 4  very wonderful kids  in our extended family, I want this country to be a place where they can grow, thrive, and express themselves honestly when it comes to politics.  That responsibility falls on all US citizens right now.

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Bellarmine University on Monday suspended an instructor who made an "offensive and unacceptable social media post" related to the assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump over the weekend, the school's assistant vice president said in a post.

"Words and actions that condone violence are unacceptable and contrary to our values, which call for respecting the intrinsic value and dignity of every individual," Jason Cissell said in a statement provided to The Courier Journal.

"We strive to create an inclusive community that welcomes all and models a spirit of goodwill. We are aware of an offensive and unacceptable social media post made by an employee over the weekend. That individual has been placed on immediate unpaid leave."

John James, the instructor, wrote on social media: "If you're gonna shoot, man, don't miss," alongside a screenshot of an article about the attempt on Trump on Saturday at a Pennsylvania rally.

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by Tyler Durden

A prominent Syrian businessman who has long been close to the government of Bashar al-Assad has been killed by an Israeli drone near the border with Lebanon on Monday, Lebanese media and the Associated Press report.

The man, Baraa Katerji, was traveling in his car near the Syrian-Lebanese border Monday evening when it was struck by a missile, instantly killing him and his bodyguard.

President Bashar al-Assad and business tycoon Baraa Katerji

He was likely targeted due to his being under US-led sanctions and a facilitator of so-called 'illicit' shipments of Iranian oil into Syria. Katerji oversaw a business empire based on oil, transport, logistics, and construction.The AP details based on regional sources that

An official from an Iran-backed group said that Katerji was killed instantly while in his SUV on the highway linking Lebanon with Syria. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to speak to the media.

The pro-government Al-Watan daily quoted unnamed "sources" as saying that Katerji, 48, was killed in a "Zionist drone strike on his car." It gave no further details.

Both the US and Israel have long sought to thwart Iranian oil and energy imports. For years the Syrian population has been hit hard by the sanctions, and is almost totally dependent on energy links to Tehran.

Claire's Observations:  How Tehran will respond to this is anyone's guess right now; however, I would like to politely remind both Israel and the US of the following:  Russia is selling its drones and missiles to Iran. https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2024/04/15/iran-israel-russia-drones-missiles/

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The more we learn about the attempt to kill Donald Trump, the more questions we have.  Over the past couple of days, I have been digging very deeply into what just happened.  To be honest, what I have discovered is extremely alarming.  At this point, there is a growing consensus that either the Secret Service was grossly incompetent or some sort of very insidious plan was being carried out.  I am going to share facts that have been documented, and I will allow my readers to come to their own conclusions.
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When I was in college, I had an acquaintance who was telling a group of us the following story: When he first got to college, he had a black roommate. Both he, the white story teller, and the black roommate did poorly that first semester. For the white student, he thought to himself, “Holy crap, I better really turn things around, otherwise, I’m going to flunk out.” However, the black student used to hang out with other black students in the dorm room and complain that the professors must be racist against them. The black student didn’t reform his ways and either quit or flunked out.

To the white guy telling the story, his interpretation was that if he (the white one) had an excuse to blame, he might have flunked out too. This was back when SAT scores were still the norm, so, more than likely the black student could have passed if he had been willing to work hard. I didn’t exactly attend the Ivy League.

I was thinking of this as I’m reading more accounts that the Democrats are going to try to use illegal aliens’ votes to rig the 2024 election. They already voted down the Safeguard American Voter Eligibility (SAVE) act. Their intentions seem pretty clear.

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Two days after the assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump, political commentator Tucker Carlson says, “It’s not crazy to think that there was something there, it was an effort to kill Trump, it wasn’t just a lone gunman.” The assailant crawled on to a nearby rooftop Saturday night while Trump was on stage at a campaign rally in Butler, Pennsylvania, 33 miles north of Pittsburgh. The shooter fired multiple shots, shirking Trump in the right ear. It remains unclear how the gunman, who was killed, was not seen and neutralized by authorities prior to opening fire. “At some point we may find out what happened on Saturday,” Carlson says.
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President Donald Trump survived an assassination attempt on Saturday, taking a grazing bullet wound in the ear. He responded with bravura, pumping his fist at the crowd and telling them to “fight” as the Secret Service tried to hustle him off. Several progressives on X alleged that the shooting may have been fake. This would not explain the death of Trump supporter Corey Comperatore, who died protecting his family at the scene.

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CNN quietly disbanded its “Race and Equality” team of reporters as part of a major restructuring that included firing 100 staffers this week, according to a report.

There were three reporters that made up the unit, which was created by former CNN president Jeff Zucker in the aftermath of the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis in 2020.

One of the journalists was fired while the other two were reassigned to other departments, according to a newsletter written by black journalist Phil Lewis.

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Authored by Richard Truesdell via American Greatness,

In the aftermath of yesterday’s assassination attempt, I find myself asking: Why all the visceral hatred of Donald Trump? It manifests itself everywhere but is most visible among Hollywood elites and members of the Fourth Estate (the press and most of the mainstream media) and especially on social media.

What did this man with the orange hairdo do to these people?

First, I want to say that I am not a raving MAGA Trump supporter, not that there is anything wrong with being one. Some of my best friends are MAGA proponents. Despite what some of my friends and professional colleagues think, I’m pretty centrist in my political philosophies: conservative on some issues (staying out of needless foreign wars, putting reasonable limits on abortion), liberal on others (maintaining individual rights, being a staunch supporter of the First Amendment). I’m pretty much a “live and let live” kind of guy.

I think that as a nation, that’s where most Americans lie, from slightly left of center to somewhat right of center. Most of us lack a sense of ideological purity.

But I think Trump’s victory in 2016 was a reaction - to years of often invisible far-left control of the institutional levers of power - rather than any sort of revolution, January 6th notwithstanding. Trump was the vessel through which many centrist Americans vented their long-simmering frustrations.

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