There’s a Washington Free Beacon article bouncing around today which has lots of folks in the political world buzzing. It seems that in September of last year Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards took a trip out to Los Angeles to – supposedly – promote the state as a film production destination.
And to collect some Hollywood campaign checks.
But mostly to collect some Hollywood campaign checks.
A flood of California political contributions went to Louisiana governor John Bel Edwards (D.) after he took a taxpayer-funded trip to Los Angeles that he said was aimed at boosting his state’s business relationship with the film industry.
There was no mention of campaign activities when Edwards returned last year from meetings with Hollywood film executives to discuss the state’s motion-picture tax credit. He said the outlook was optimistic for growing the film industry’s presence in Louisiana but had no new projects to announce.
The most immediate impact from the trip, however, was new Hollywood donors for his political campaign.
A review of his most recent campaign filing shows that within a week of Edwards’s trip he received $5,000 from Sony Pictures, $5,000 from Quixote Studios, $5,000 from the Motion Picture Association of America, and $5,000 each from Manhattan Beach Studios and one of its subsidiaries. A month later, the Edwards campaign received an additional $5,000 from Disney and $2,500 from Paramount, the filing shows.
None of the above-mentioned California-based studios had contributed to Edwards before, a review of his past disclosures found. In fact, the $32,500 he received from the studios far exceeded the sum of all other contributions he’s received from California.
Shortly after the trip, Edwards also received $5,000 contributions each from 21st Century Fox and CBS. Although both are headquartered in New York, their executives met with Edwards on his trip to Hollywood.
Documents obtained from the Louisiana State Police through a public records request by the Washington Free Beacon show taxpayers paid at least $5,995.40 for protective services during the trip, including $1,122.40 in overtime.
Edwards spokesman Richard Carbo pushed back on a suggestion from the Louisiana Republican Party that tax dollars paid the bill for the trip, saying he could “confirm that taxpayers did not pay for the [California] trip” and linking to a separate filing for Edwards’s PAC.
The filing shows sizable expenses were billed to the political organization, including a $3,162.19 lodging expense at the SLS Hotel at Beverly Hills and a $309.26 lunch at Commissary at the Line LA. There were also $2,385.60 and $299.96 payments to Delta Airlines for flights to Los Angeles in late September that appear to be for the trip in question.
We can’t say there was anything untoward in how Edwards got taxpayers to pay for his state police detail for what amounts to a campaign trip. If he was out in L.A. flogging changes to the state’s film tax credit program, he can probably justify sticking us with the bill for his fundraising junket.
What we think is a little more interesting is that Edwards hoovered up all that Hollywood money and then signed the fetal heartbeat bill.
You won’t find a pro-life movie executive in the lot among those people who coughed up to Edwards for his re-election campaign. Hollywood is so monolithically pro-abortion as to be tyrannical. And yet Edwards has their money.
It’s worth watching to see whether the film industry swells will sit back and take that, or if they begin squawking about it. It’s a decent bet Edwards’ next trip out to L.A. won’t be quite so productive from a fundraising perspective.
On a related note, Edwards just took a trip up to New York Monday, for “meetings…”
What’s worth watching is his next campaign finance statement, or perhaps the one after, to see if he gets any campaign checks from New Yorkers.
Why? Because Edwards is still bound, until 30 days after the legislative session has ended, from engaging in campaign fundraising by state law. There is a blackout on elected officials for the purpose of preventing them from directly selling their votes – or in Edwards’ case, his decision whether to veto bills.
But if he’s in New York for “meetings,” and it just so happens that people he’s met with turn him loose campaign checks, perhaps we can just believe that they were so impressed with the small-town lawyer from Amite, Louisiana who’s shrunk Louisiana’s economy more often than he’s grown it and who’s set a half-billion tax dollars on fire by signing ineligible people up for Medicaid that they couldn’t resist the temptation to contribute to his re-election.
Edwards has demanded the people of Louisiana believe much more obvious lies than that, so why not?
President Donald Trump kicked off his 2020 re-election campaign last night in Orlando, Florida, appearing before a packed stadium of supporters that seats 20,000.
Some Trump supporters waited in line over 40 hours before doors opened to secure their spot. During his speech, he officially unveiled his 2020 re-election slogan: “KEEP AMERICA GREAT”.
Here are some of the best Donald Trump quotes from his raucous re-election rally speech:
“Our economy is the envy of the world, perhaps the greatest economy we’ve had in the history of our country.. The American Dream is back.”
“The only collusion was committed by the Democrats..”
“The FBI told President Obama about possible Russian interference and he did nothing because he thought that Hillary Clinton, Crooked Hillary was going to win.”
“Our Radical Democrat opponents are driven by hatred, prejudice, and rage. They want to destroy you and they want to destroy our country, as we know it.”
“I will soon have appointed my 145th judge. President Obama was very nice to us. He didn’t fill the positions.”
“Just imagine what this angry left-wing mob would do if they were in charge of this country.”
“They would strip Americans of their constitutional rights while flooding the country with illegal immigrants in the hopes it will expand their political base…”
“This election is a verdict on whether we want to live in a country where the people who lose an election refuse to concede and spend the next two years trying to shred our Constitution and rip your country apart.”
“We rebuilt China. They’ve done a great job, but they took us for suckers, and that includes Obama and Biden.”
“By the way, those trade deals are getting very good folks, you will see.”
“She used another word. You know what the other word was? She said, deplorables and irredeemables. I think that was worse, but it didn’t get picked up.”
“I have news for democrats who want to return us to the bitter failures and betrayals of the past. We are not going back, we’re going on to victory.”
“You know, I’ve cut more regulations than any president in the history of our country, regardless of the length of their term.”
“And that is why tonight, I stand before you to officially launch my campaign for a second term as president of the United States.”
“Since the very first day I walked through the doors of the White House. I have never forgotten who sent me there, You did.. you all did.”
“We are keeping our promises to the American people, because my only special interest is you.”
“They said it wouldn’t be possible. We have lifted more than six million Americans off of food stamps..”
“The unemployment rate is the lowest rate it’s been in over 51 years, think of that.”
“Democrats support sanctuary cities.”
“..thanks to our brave warriors, the ISIS caliphate that you’ve been hearing so much about, has been totally obliterated 100%.”
“We’re charting a path to stability and peace in the Middle East, because great nations do not want to fight endless wars.”
“A vote for any Democrat in 2020 is a vote for the rise of radical socialism and the destruction of the American dream.”
“We will elect a Republican Congress to create a safe, modern, and lawful system of immigration.”
“We will give school choice to millions of under-served children who are trapped in failing schools and failing school system.”
“We have been blessed by God with the greatest nation on the face of the earth and we are going to keep it that way.”
Rod Dreher at The American Conservative gets credit for smoking out this true gem. It’s a cellphone video from what appears to be a high school student in Scotland, who it seems goes by the name of Murray, who started filming when his teacher, who had kicked him out of class for taking the position that there are really only two genders – male and female – during a discussion of that subject.
Here’s the video. It goes about three minutes.
My Teacher Kicked Me Out of Class for Saying There are Two Genders - YouTube
Notice how the teacher has absolutely zero defense for his actions? It’s a pure appeal to authority which is reminiscent of the “two plus two equals five” argument in George Orwell’s 1984. Because the national school authority says there are – whatever number of genders our cultural Marxist betters has decreed these days – your opportunity as someone who sees no logic or reason to that position is to keep your mouth shut.
And if you don’t take advantage of that opportunity? Why, punishment then results.
Teacher: “I am not putting my opinion out. I am stating what is national school authority policy, okay?”
Student: “But it’s not scientific whatsoever.”
Teacher: “Not every policy is scientific, Murray!”
That is certainly true, as there is no science whatsoever to the idea that your gender is whatever you choose it to be. Murray, the Scottish student, is precisely right in saying there are men and women, and everything else is an identity choice rather than a gender. While the interests of politeness might well behoove us not to abuse those who, for whatever reasons, be they mental illness or something else, cannot color within the lines of their plumbing – that doesn’t extend to an obligation not to speak the truth.
How bad has this gotten? From the Daily Wire comes a study from the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships which finds, shockingly, that not a lot of people want to date the trans crowd, and rather than recognize that for the obvious and long-standing truth that it is, the authors see that as bigotry…
Unsurprisingly, 87.5% of those polled said they prefer the first two options depending on which way they swing: Cisgender man or woman, respectively. Non-binary and transgender people were at the bottom and typically were only chosen by people who identified as bi-sexual, gay, or some other type of sexuality. For heteros, the results were other cisgender heteros. The authors find this deeply problematic and believe that attitudes need to change.
“If trans and non-binary people lack access to one of the most stable sources of social support, this could explain some of the existing health disparities within trans communities,” they write. “Looking more closely at the patterns of responses, it also became clear that individuals were least likely to express an interest in dating trans women, even if their sexual identity would otherwise indicate an interest in women (i.e., straight men, lesbian women, or queer/bisexual individuals). Indeed, nearly 20% fewer people indicated an interest in trans women than would have been expected based on the sexual identities of the individuals within the sample.”
The authors also examined participants’ responses in a similar study by the Canadian Psychological Association’s annual convention, which yielded similar results. However, the authors blamed this on several factors outside of nature itself: “Dehumanization/prejudice, uncertainty or lack of knowledge, and issues related to bodies and reproduction.”
“The most common reason for being unwilling to consider dating transgender or non-binary people was that participants felt that they lacked information and understanding of what precisely these kinds of identities mean within the context of dating,” the authors continue. “For example, many simply stated that they had never really considered the question before and were unsure of what it would mean to be in a relationship with a transgender or non-binary individual. Other reasons, however, were less about lacking information, and more about a strong dislike for trans people.”
The authors scold participants for saying transgenders have “make believe” identities or for wanting to date people with whom they could have actual biological children, characterizing their language as “dehumanizing.”
“A minority of individuals mentioned a desire to only date people with whom they could have biologically related children, however, often these reasons were still expressed using dehumanizing language, such as saying that a trans man ‘was not a natural man” or a ‘real man’ and that therefore it would not be possible to have children with him,” they write.
The authors conclude that while they cannot mandate who people should and should not date, they stress that transgenders dating hetero cisgenders should be seen as a sign of progress every bit as much as interracial dating.
“Just as sociologists have tracked acceptance of inter-racial relationships as a metric of overall societal acceptance of racial minorities, future fluctuations in the extent to which trans and non-binary individuals are included within the intimate world of dating may help to illuminate progress (or lack thereof) with respect to fully including trans and non-binary individuals within our society,” they conclude.
So let’s sum this up: normal human beings, a definition which can well include gay people, do not find attractive the prospect of dating someone who can’t tell what gender they are by looking down in the shower. And this fact is a bad thing which must be remedied, apparently starting in the schools, wherein it is forbidden to express the point of view shared by virtually 100 percent of human beings for 99 percent of the time civilization has existed on the subject of gender.
President Trump said his administration will have built more than 400 miles of border wall by the end of 2020, with the entire wall being finished soon after.
He said in an interview with Fox and Friends:
“So the wall is going up, it’s going up rapidly, we’re going to have over 400 miles of wall built by the end of next year. The wall is very important. It’s hard to breach it, it’s high, it’s strong, it’s powerful, and it’s going up at a much lower cost than the wall that was planned prior to me getting there.”
He also said the state of the previous border barrier under the Obama and Bush administrations is a disaster.
“You have to see what they built, it’s a disgrace,” Trump said. “We’re actually fixing it and in some cases we have to take down fairly new wall because it was so bad.”
“We’re going to have over 400 miles of wall built, and that’s going to be in the most important areas, and we’re going to have all of it built before you know.”
Progress along the southern border has been made despite constant legal threats and political obstruction from Democrats.
“This is despite tremendous obstacles that have been put in front of us by the Democrats, you have no idea,” he added. “We just won the lawsuit on the wall, we won a big lawsuit on the wall, brought by Nancy Pelosi.
“And maybe that’s criminal, that she’s allowing drug dealers and gang members into our country, maybe that’s criminal when you talk about it, because what’s happening on the border, we’re getting it straightened out.”
He said Democrats have refused to work with him on any form of border security, saying Congress could “solve the asylum problem and the loopholes in 15 minutes.”
On the issue of Medicaid expansion, Democrat Gov. John Bel Edwards hopes people forget he’s the one who created the problem of inappropriate and unnecessary payments.
The state received some good news recently when it announced it would spend $400 million fewer on Medicaid, about 3 percent less than budgeted. It identified as a major contributor cleansing the rolls of ineligible recipients, almost all of them coming from Medicaid expansion, through a technology upgrade that allows for more frequent verification. Since then, Edwards Administration officials have all but broken their arms patting themselves on the back for the discovery of (for now) over 30,000 ineligible participants to save the state money, and the public can expect Edwards to repeat that party line ad naseum as he runs for reelection.
But in all this Edwards wishes to bury a dirty secret. So many erroneous clients, who comprised about six percent of all expansion enrollees, gained illegal access to service because of two policies that Edwards instituted, by design, that makes it easier for ineligible individuals to enroll.
For one, when taking office Edwards relaxed tougher initial verification standards instituted by his predecessor put in precisely to cut down on an unacceptably-high error rate. Edwards also allowed automatic acceptance into expansion of Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program enrollees, thereby baking in that program’s 6.3 percent rate of illegal participants. Possibly almost all of the 30,000-plus ejected earlier this year gained access to the program because of these policy changes.
And those facets haven’t changed. The new software permits checking every three months, but does nothing to keep ineligible individuals from enrolling. Only by reverting back to the standards that Edwards altered can he prevent fraudulent and ineligible Medicaid recipients from picking the pockets of taxpayers for three months of inappropriate payments; his crowing about finding ineligible recipients only tries to hide that fact.
The costs aren’t trivial. The latest data for the expansion population, from mid-2017 or after one year, show an average expenditure of $4,366 per enrollee, or the cost of premium payments to a Healthy Louisiana managed care provider. Since enrollment ramped up from zero to over 470,000 in that time frame, that figure for the year represents payments for only part of the year, understating the actual cost now almost $6,300.
As well, the federal government only asked for an average of 2.5 percent paid by the state in that fiscal year. As such, assuming the 30,000 would have been caught only after a year, the state spent unnecessarily $131 million in FY 2017, of which $3.2 million came directly from state taxpayers.
The situation will change only marginally for the better as long as the lax intake requirements continue, By 2020, the state will pay a 10 percent share. Using today’s $6,280 a year in premium payments and assuming a six percent ineligible figure continues, although it was discovered after just three months instead of 12, state taxpayers from then on will have Edwards’ decisions cause them to throw away yearly over $4.3 million of their money (and $39 million of federal taxpayer funds).
Of course, this pales in comparison to the money that goes out the door because expansion allows a portion of its enrollees to drop insurance they paid for themselves – either privately or through an employer (or employers chose to jettison them by disbanding their offerings because of rising rates) – and make taxpayers pick up the tab. Some calculations I made using survey data pegged the proportion enrolled in expansion for this reason at 47 percent costing the state $402 million a year; the Pelican Institute using a different but valid methodology computed a figure of 35.5 percent costing $461 million annually. That means in 2020 and beyond state taxpayers directly would cough up $40 million to $46 million yearly through this expanded government benefit.
Thus, decisions made by Edwards – to expand Medicaid with no strings attached (such as co-payments or monthly premiums paid by clients) and to loosen eligibility requirements – will cost Louisianans directly up to $50 million a year to give people something they already paid for themselves or don’t qualify for, plus the portion of federal taxes Louisianans pay to foot the remaining $450 million. Those numbers will decrease significantly only if Edwards no longer lives at 1001 Capitol Access Road after the middle of January.
Nearly 40 million Social Security numbers have been stolen and used by illegal aliens, according to a report from the Immigration Reform Law Institute.
The Institute says from 2012 to 2016 there were “39 million instances where names and Social Security numbers on W-2 tax forms did not match the corresponding Social Security records.”
There is a “thriving black market” they use to obtain Social Security numbers in order to get a job.
The report highlights a practice used by Obama administration that stopped sending “no match” letters to employers notifying them that the numbers their employees are using on their wage forms do not match their identity.
This came after he approved “amnesty” for roughly 700,000 younger illegals through the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
“The Social Security numbers of young children are especially sought by illegal aliens, as this theft is likely to go undetected for years. As children reach late teenage years and apply for credit for cars, student loans, and other needs, they may find that their credit has been compromised with mortgages, credit cards and criminal records attached to their identities,” the institute argues.
“This investigation shines a light on the depth of America’s problems as a result of allowing illegal aliens into the country,” Dale L. Wilcox, executive director and general counsel of IRLI, said. “It also debunks the idea that being in the country illegally is a victimless crime. Millions of Americans, in many cases children, are having their identities stolen to enable even more criminal activity. Illegal aliens should not reap Social Security benefits that result from the commission of identity theft.”
Hopefully Trump will do something about this, starting with cleaning up the master death file to get dead people off of the roles receiving federal welfare benefits.
The Austin school’s tuition was $10,880 per year for in-state, full-time students. The education school’s full-time student enrollment was 722.
The universities ranked by U.S. News were examined using weighted averages of 10 metrics, including a peer assessment by school deans, educational professionals’ assessments, student acceptance rates, verbal scores on standardized tests, doctoral degrees granted per year, research expenditures and student-faculty ratios.
U.S. News collected the data in fall of 2018 and earlier this year.
Top Graduate Education Programs in the U.S.
University of Pennsylvania
$1,628 per credit (full-time)
$50,703 per year (full-time)
University of California Los Angeles
$11,442 per year (in-state, full-time), $26,544 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Wisconsin-Madison
$10,728 per year (in-state, full-time), $24,054 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
Vanderbilt University (Peabody)
$1,967 per credit (full-time)
Johns Hopkins University
$43,923 per year (full-time)
New York University (Steinhardt)
New York City
$41,424 per year (full-time)
Teachers College, Columbia University
New York City
$1,635 per credit (full-time)
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
$23,578 per year (in-state, full-time), $47,624 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Southern California (Rossier)
$1,863 per credit (full-time)
University of Texas-Austin
$10,880 per year (in-state, full-time), $21,358 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Oregon
$17,514 per year (in-state, full-time), $24,858 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Washington
$16,392 per year (in-state, full-time), $30,232 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
Arizona State University
$11,136 per year (in-state, full-time), $22,644 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Virginia (Curry)
$25,840 per year (full-time)
University of California-Berkeley
$11,442 per year (in-state, full-time), $26,544 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Kansas
$419 per credit (in-state, full-time), $977 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
Virginia Commonwealth University
$20,024 per year (in-state, full-time), $42,686 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
$1,422 per credit (in-state, full-time), $2,201 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
Boston College (Lynch)
Chestnut Hill, Mass.
$1,478 per credit (full-time)
Michigan State University
$789 per credit (in-state, full-time), $1,518 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
University of California-Irvine
$11,442 per year (in-state, full-time), $26,544 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Florida
$449 per credit (in-state, full-time), $1,139 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
Ohio State University
$11,560 per year (in-state, full-time), $34,064 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
$10,243 per year (in-state, full-time), $27,454 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
$384 per credit (in-state, full-time), $1,330 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Colorado-Boulder
$11,484 per year (in-state, full-time), $30,384 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Connecticut (Neag)
$15,350 per year (in-state, full-time), $36,962 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
Utah State University
$7,484 per year (in-state, full-time), $26,194 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Maryland-College Park
$717 per credit (in-state, full-time), $1,548 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
Texas A&M University-College Station
$273 per credit (in-state, full-time), $746 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
$53,592 per year (full-time)
University of Pittsburgh
$22,846 per year (in-state, full-time), $38,736 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of California-Davis
$13,570 per year (in-state, full-time), $28,673 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Georgia
$4,352 per year (in-state, full-time), $12,346 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Missouri
$368 per credit (in-state, full-time), $1,007 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
Boise State University
$6,759 per year (in-state, full-time), $22,841 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
College of William and Mary
$10,064 per year (in-state, full-time), $27,086 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
Florida State University
$404 per credit (in-state, full-time), $1,111 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
New York City
$1,404 per credit (full-time)
Pennsylvania State University-University Park
$21,540 per year (in-state, full-time), $36,974 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Georgia State University
$390 per credit (in-state, full-time), $1,251 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
North Carolina State University-Raleigh
$11,494 per year (in-state, full-time), $27,982 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
Purdue University-West Lafayette
West Lafayette, Ind.
$9,208 per year (in-state, full-time), $18,802 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
$16,488 per year (in-state, full-time), $22,698 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Delaware
$671 per credit (in-state, full-time), $1,827 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
$17,232 per year (in-state, full-time), $29,304 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Illinois-Urbana-Champaign
$12,688 per year (in-state, full-time), $27,412 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Iowa
$16,257 per year (in-state, full-time), $44,569 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
San Diego State University
$11,838 per year (in-state, full-time), $18,966 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Arkansas-Fayetteville
$420 per credit (in-state, full-time), $1,138 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
University of California-Santa Barbara (Gevirtz)
$12,570 per year (in-state, full-time), $27,672 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Illinois-Chicago
$11,660 per year (in-state, full-time), $23,900 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
Loyola Marymount University
$1,273 per credit (full-time)
University of Kentucky
$13,052 per year (in-state, full-time), $31,364 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
George Mason University
$489 per credit (in-state, full-time), $689 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
$565 per credit (full-time)
George Washington University
$1,710 per credit (full-time)
$1,559 per credit (full-time)
Washington University in St. Louis
St. Louis, Mo.
$52,400 per year (full-time)
University of Arizona
$10,900 per year (in-state, full-time), $22,000 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Utah
Salt Lake City
$6,460 per year (in-state, full-time), $22,807 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University at Albany-SUNY
$11,090 per year (in-state, full-time), $22,650 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of California-Riverside
$11,442 per year (in-state, full-time) $15,102 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Hawaii-Manoa
$10,400 per year (in-state, full-time), $24,720 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Massachusetts-Boston
$17,896 per year (in-state, full-time), $34,932 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Tennessee-Knoxville
$13,120 per year (in-state, full-time), $31,538 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
$9,386 per year (in-state, full-time), $19,776 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of California-San Diego
$11,442 per year (in-state, full-time), $26,544 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Massachusetts-Amherst
$14,348 per year (in-state, full-time), $31,449 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Vermont
$664 per credit (in-state, full-time), $1,674 per credit (out-of-state, full-time)
University of Miami
Coral Gables, Fla.
$2,030 per credit (full-time)
University of North Carolina-Greensboro
$5,219 per year (in-state, full-time), $18,937 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of South Carolina
$13,650 per year (in-state, full-time), $29,196 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
Brigham Young University-Provo (McKay)
$8,892 per year (LDS member, full-time), $8,892 per year (non-LDS member, full-time)
Iowa State University
$9,302 per year (in-state, full-time), $23,564 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
$845 per credit (full-time)
University of Central Florida
University of Cincinnati
$12,790 per year (in-state, full-time), $24,532 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
University of North Carolina-Charlotte
$4,337 per year (in-state, full-time), $17,771 per year (out-of-state, full-time)
“Actually it is inconceivable that any party in American history could summon such a collection of mediocrities and frauds. Plagiarists, charlatans, liars, nonentities – it is amazing that Mr. Yang or maybe even Ms. Williamson would want to be seen in such a crowd.”
– R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr., on the 2020 Democrat presidential field
Nearly 20,000 people attended the Trump rally in Orlando, Florida– surpassing records of previous rallies, this time for his 2020 re-election bid. Attending a Trump rally is like swimming through a sea of dolphins– you’re unable to swim on your own but the dolphins carry you. It’s impossible to move but everyone around you is friendly and peaceful. When people bump into you they apologize. It’s a surreal experience to be surrounded by a sea of kind people. It’s also entertaining because Trump tells jokes.
Image credit: @CalebJHull
Here are a few highlights from the event:
Melania Trump received praise and respect despite hatred spewed at her by liberals and the media:
FLOTUS said: ““He loves this Country and will continue to work on your behalf for as long as he can, all of us will.”
BEAUTIFUL! @FLOTUS “He loves this Country and will continue to work on your behalf for as long as he can, all of us will” Thank you for your incredible grace, beauty and for putting up with all the hate to be our Amazing First Lady. We love you! pic.twitter.com/bFGZlyd8Tc
Sarah Huckabee Sanders received a lot of love as well. Fighting back tears she said: ““I’ve had the chance to be on the front row of history and watch you drastically change our country for the better.”
“You’ve made America great. You’ll continue to make America great. I couldn’t be prouder to be a part of your team.”
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders to President Trump: “I’ve had the chance to be on the front row of history and watch you drastically change our country for the better.”
A Texan just learning how to walk in 2019 will be old enough to carry a knife as long as Jim Bowie‘s by around the time of the Texas bicentennial.
Between here and there, that’s plenty of time for the Texas Legislature to correct an error that led a “thinking Governor” to veto a unanimous resolution in honor of the legendary Bowie Knife.
In the meantime, just sit back and we’ll tell you a tale about a courageous fighter named Bowie, his world-renowned knife, a big brawl on the mighty Mississippi … and a not-so-big brawl at the Texas Capitol 200 years later.
On Saturday, June 15, Gov. Greg Abbott vetoed a Bowie knife resolution, which would have enshrined the legendary style of blade as the official state knife of Texas. Unlike a bill in the 2017 legislature which legalized the carry of all swords, machetes, spears, and knives (unless you’re a minor), this particular bill was a no-brainer and carried no change to existing law or threats to liberal attempts at forming a weapon-less utopia.
House Concurrent Resolution 86 received unanimous passage in both the Texas House of Representatives and the Texas Senate. But what poked at Gov. Abbott was a detail regarding which state the brawl that started the legendary status for his knife took place. The infamous “Sandbar Fight” near Natchez, Miss., in 1827 was in fact in Mississippi and not Natchez, La. (though the altercation happened near the state line). Both towns are small — Natchez, Miss., being a city located along the Mississippi River with a population of 15,792 and Natchez, La., as the smaller of the two burgs with 583 denizens and located further to the north and west in Louisiana.
But the state it took place in may not necessarily matter because the Sandbar Fight took place on (supposedly) neutral turf, on an amorphous sliver of mud between Vidalia, La., on the west bank and Natchez, Miss., on the eastern shore. The confusion may stem from the fact that Vidalia has an exhibit on the Sandbar Fight where the incident is a larger part of its civic identity. The fight itself owes its origins to Central Louisiana politics, so it’s not hard to see where someone might mistake the two Natchezes.
The wealthy Wells and Cuny families — who share a common lineage — were engaged in ongoing feuds with many of the region’s newer families. The fights between “new money” and the Wells-Cuny establishment involved everything from vote rigging and ballot box stuffing to bad bank loans — and eventually the honor of a young debutante. (If the reader knows nothing at all about Antebellum Southern honor, then please know that things got bad.)
Rather than continue these disputes any further into the public sphere, the gentlemanly thing to do at the time was duke it out. A muddy sandbar on the Mississippi was chosen, because, according to local lore, prior attempts at dueling or fighting risked becoming full-blown riots or triggering anti-dueling laws that attempted to stop the epidemic of honor-killings.
The primary fighters were Samuel Wells III and the “new money” Dr. Thomas Maddox, both of Alexandria, La. According to tradition, each of the primary duelers were allowed “seconds” as well as friends or supporters who would assure a fair fight. Bowie was there as a supporter of Wells.
On the day of the Sandbar Fight, Bowie carried a custom-made sheath knife in the event of any premature actions. Reason being: During a previous duel, Bowie was unfairly shot by a Maj. Norris Wright (remember that name) and not allowed to avenge his injury due to crowd activity. The knife was allegedly his backup plan to ward off any interference by the crowd this time.
The duel was conducted by formal rules of the time, with delays between exchanges of gunfire. Everyone survived the first round. As the primary participants prepared to celebrate (they even shook hands), a brawl broke out between the seconds and supporters.
During the resultant fight involving 12 grown men, Gen. Samuel Cuny (on the Wells side) and Maj. Wright (yes, the same Norris Wright that shot Bowie before — small and scrappy world) were both killed. Bowie and Maddox partisan Alfred Blanchard received severe injuries. The others walked way with barely a scratch.
Here’s where Bowie became famous. During the brawl, Maddox fighter Col. Robert Crain, shot Bowie in the hip, knocking him to the sandy-rocky ground below. Bowie, rising to his feet, charged at Crain striking him with an empty pistol so hard that it broke in two. Wright took a shot at Bowie (missing him this time) and took out a sword-cane (!) to stab Bowie in the chest. The cheap blade broke on Bowie’s sternum, whereby Bowie was shot in the arm by other brawlers.
Bowie, not exactly the sword-cane type, reached into his shirt, grabbed his now-famous knife, and started spinning it with such prowess observers remembered his knife-wielding skill and told stories about it. Bowie managed to cut off Blanchard’s forearm and stab Wright in the chest, thus ending the 90-second melee.
Bowie, severely injured, was carried away by Crain who had a few minute ago shot him in the hip. Now that’s Southern honor.
Bowie’s miraculous survival was followed by Bowie wearing his large knife and sheath prominently as a deterrent (an early advocate of Open Carry, for sure). The legend of the fight spread so quickly that knives styled after Bowie’s became a relatively common fixture and an icon of frontier ruggedness. The Bowie Knife has had many alternative names of the decades: “Arkansas Toothpick,” the “Texas Toothpick,” and the “Rio Grande Camp Knife.”
Bowie later moved to Texas, married into wealth, searched for a silver mine, lost his new family to cholera, and became a leader in the Texas Revolution. He died during the Battle of the Alamo, where some depictions of the battle have him swinging his trademark weapon at Mexican imperial forces. But the likely truth is that Bowie, who had a severe illness, emptied out as much gun ammunition into approaching soldiers as he could while in bed until the moment of his death. The enduring image of Jim Bowie is that of Alamo defender, which may be why “Louisiana Toothpick” never stuck. Go figure on the Arkansas Toothpick moniker.
At a museum hosted in the Alamo’s extant Long Barrack, a remnant blade is displayed as an example of what that knife could have looked like. According to Blade magazine (yes, there is such a thing) the coffin-handle Bowie-esque relic may have been a part of a Black Knife (without a guard, among other differences) and not a true Bowie Knife. How the original Bowie Knife appeared may be lost to the sands of time.
The disputes and discrepancies of the legendary Jim Bowie continue, and may continue to be disputed until the 87th Legislature when a corrected resolution is drafted. If it does, we advise that any duels not take place in the middle of the Red River (Oklahoma owns the title to all land up to the natural gradient under a treaty between the U.S. and Spain). And the politics of the Rio Grande may render finding neutral turf to be even more difficult. On second thought, maybe the Texas Capitol is the best place to settle it.